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The new bill is a companion to Senate bill 1654.
The Dietary Supplement Tax Equity Act—a bill that would expand health savings accounts (HSA), health reimbursement arrangements, and flexible spending accounts (FSA) to cover dietary supplements—was introduced by Reps. Brendan Boyle (D-PA) and Darin LaHood (R-IL). The legislation is a House companion bill to S.1654.
“The recent global health pandemic has taught us the importance of maintaining a nutrient-rich diet to maintain our health”, said Boyle, in a press release. “More than 22 million Americans have chosen to enroll in a health savings account coupled with a consumer-direct health plan. Given this significant growth, action should be taken to better meet consumer needs. Since HSAs, FSAs, and HRAs, require a prescription for the reimbursement of vitamins it makes sense to remove barriers to supplementing nutrient-deficient diets. Our bill takes a step in that direction.”
“As enrollment in HSA’s continues to grow, our bill would remove unnecessary barriers to better meet the needs of consumers. This bipartisan approach would allow over-the-counter vitamins and minerals to be considered as qualified medical expenses under HSAs, FSAs, and HRAs, so that a patient can utilize their health savings dollars to access these dietary supplements,” adds LaHood.
In September, Representatives John Curtis (R-UT) and Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ) introduced a similar bill (HR 5214) that has received broad industry support. “This common-sense solution will help keep Americans healthy as we continue to manage the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Daniel Fabricant, PhD, president and CEO of the Natural Products Association (NPA; Washington, D.C.) in a press release. “We would like to thank Reps. Boyle and LaHood and Reps. Curtis and Gottheimer for their support and look forward to working together on this important issue for the health of millions of Americans.”
The NPA’s board of directors distributed a letter to the American Herbal Products Association, Council for Responsible Nutrition, Consumer Healthcare Products Association, and United Natural Products Alliance, calling for support of S.1654 and the House companion bill. “In order to continue this great momentum, it’s crucial for the industry to come together in support of these bills,” said Fabricant. “As companion pieces of legislation with sponsors on the appropriate committees, these two bills represent our best chance at expanding access to supplements.”