HSA's have now been on the market for the better part of a decade and see no real threat of disappearing unless the underlying health plans become uncompetitive.
This brings up a valid point as the overwhelming price-benefit that individual HSA health plans use to have is not really present to the same degree anymore.
Let's look at which HSA eligible plans make the most sense on the individual/family market with a quick update on why HSA's can provide a benefit for individuals and families in California.
First, we have HSA eligible plans available from multiple carriers in California. Aetna, Anthem Blue Cross, and Blue Shield all offer PPO based HSA plans. The PPO designation is important because although the plan "type" in the quote engine will show as HSA, they do participate in the PPO network of providers which is is important.
The HSA benefits are now fairly similar since preventative benefits are covered at 100% on all the plans and by definition, an HSA plan is a straight high deductible plan. There are differences, however in the true max out of pocket for the various plans both in terms of whether there is a coinsurance percentage whether the deductible/max is per person or cumulative.
We'll discuss these various points.
Luckily, the HSA plans made the cut with the new ACA law. You'll find them in the Bronze level of plans for individuals and families.
There are also some Silver Group HSA plans available.
The core functioning is the same from before the ACA law went into effect.
The $4K and $6K deductible plans are generally the best priced plan on the market for HSA plans although we miss just 12-18 months ago when we had the $3500 HSA plan priced at almost half of the current options.
Those days are gone unfortunately. Now, there may be some options comparable are better priced on the straight PPO market (such as the Bronze plans) but this isn't an apples to apples comparison.
They also do not offer the HSA tax benefit which we can generally estimate at 30% of the amount you plan to fund separately in your HSA account.
For example, if as a family you fund $6K, that's $1800 in real after tax money if you qualify. Dividing that by 12, it's the equivalent of $150 monthly we can effectively reduce from HSA premium amounts if we full fund.
That's a lot of money and is the true underlying reason to get an HSA California health plan. It used to be that correspondent PPO plans were priced so much higher than HSA plans that the HSA plans were hard to beat regardless of account funding.
These days, the tax benefit needs to be had or you need to appreciate the lower max out of pocket (since deductible and max are the same number on the $4K and $6K Shield Savings plan). We would be happy to walk through these options against other health plans for your particular situation.
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