Philadelphia Reflections

The musings of a physician who has served the community for over six decades

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N-HSA: The New Health Savings Accounts
Some new ideas are ready to be debated. Here are the ones I favor for 2016.

In Sum: N-HSA

So now we have two products, Classical HSA, and New HSA. The first is growing and prospering, but needs some brief, liberating Congressional language to free it from tax-inequality, and deposit limits. With about two sentences of legal language, the Classical version should be a wonderfully simple way to reduce healthcare costs and provide a way to fund retirement costs at the same time.

The New-HSA, by comparison, would require much more extensive legislation, but it could result in a massive reduction of healthcare costs. It is capable of enlarging for new remedies, and shrinking if we cure a few diseases. It could even accommodate subsidizing the poor, or building substantial retirement funds. It could provide a framework for whole-life approaches in an environment of competition if people with that sort of experience step forward. It would, however, require a great deal of legislation. It would encounter opponents who would be disadvantaged by change, by disintermediation, by competition, and by politics. So it might not look like what I envision after we are through with it.

Its greatest danger is its greatest strength: since it could make healthcare cheaper, it could be captured by those who desire, not improved health so much, as an improved Christmas tree.

Originally published: Tuesday, November 10, 2015; most-recently modified: Tuesday, May 21, 2019