Parkridge Medical Group October 26, 2015

With year’s end approaching, be aware—some of your health insurance benefits could be “use it or lose it.”

Under the Affordable Care Act, your health insurance company is required to provide many preventive care screenings free of charge, typically including:

  • An annual well visit
  • Blood pressure and cholesterol screenings
  • A colonoscopy for all adults older than 50
  • Depression screening
  • A hepatitis C test for all people born between 1945 and 1965
  • Vaccines for adults and children

Before your insurance plan resets for the year, make sure you’ve taken advantage of all the preventive tests you may need.


If you need more extensive medical care, there are two main types of spending accounts available with most insurance plans—flexible spending accounts (FSAs) and health savings accounts (HSAs). An individual FSA allows you and your employer to contribute up to $2,550 of pre-tax income to a special account that can only be used for health expenses. Your employer may offer a grace period of up to 75 days or have a rollover provision that allows up to $500 of your FSA to roll over to the next year—otherwise, all expired annual benefits are absorbed back into your company’s fund.

HSA accounts also allow you to contribute pre-tax income to a special account that can be used solely for health expenses. However, HSAs have a higher contribution level—individuals can contribute up to $3,350 a year. You also get to keep all the money in your account from year to year.

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