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New FSA rules to take effect soon

By Scott Harvey

– Employees with flexible spending accounts are reminded of upcoming changes, due to new health care reform legislation, that will affect certain medical purchases.

Effective January 1, FSAs cannot make reimbursements for the cost of over-the-counter medications, such as nonprescription pain relievers, cold medicines, antacids and allergy medications.

Pat Kropp is the benefits coordinator at Texas A&M University-Commerce. She says it's not a bad idea to load up on frequently-used items before year's end to take advantage of the available reimbursement.

"I would advise anyone that if there are typical supplies that they use each month to go get two or three bottles of Mylanta, two or three of Tylenol, whatever. And stock up on it for the year."

Kropp says items that will remain eligible for reimbursements include but are not limited to insulin and diabetic supplies, reading glasses, bandages, contact lens solution and denture adhesive.

Employees can visit www.mypayflex.com for more information on these FSA changes.

The last day to purchase medical items before the new rules take effect is December 31.