Medicines and Drugs that are Over-the-Counter (OTC): FSA Eligibility

Medicines and Drugs that are Over-the-Counter (OTC): requires a prescription to be eligible with a Flexible Spending Account (FSA)

Medicines and drugs that are Over-the-Counter (OTC) but prescribed by a medical professional, is eligible for reimbursement with a flexible spending account (FSA), health savings account (HSA), a health reimbursement arrangement (HRA). Medicines and drugs that are Over-the-Counter (OTC) are not eligible with a dependent care flexible spending account (DCFSA) or a limited care flexible spending account (LCFSA).

What are medicines and drugs that are Over-the-Counter (OTC)?

Medicines and drugs that are Over-the-Counter (OTC) must be prescribed to treat a disease or condition in order to be eligible for reimbursement with a consumer-directed healthcare plan.

Medicines and drugs that are Over-the-Counter (OTC) may be brand-name or generic. A medical professional prescription must be acquired, regardless, for reimbursement eligibility (MedlinePlus).

Why do OTC drugs and medicines require a prescription?

Today, a huge variety of over-the-counter (OTC) medicines are sold in grocery stores, supermarkets and pharmacies throughout the U.S. that can treat a wide range of potential ailments (U.S. Food and Drug Administration). Everything from analgesics (pain relievers) to antacids to antihistamines have historically been covered by consumer-directed healthcare accounts, but in light of the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), a series of changes have been put into place regarding the reimbursement of common drugs and medicines that can alleviate a wide variety of common maladies.

As of January 1, 2011 when the PPACA went into effect, any drugs and medicines that are sold over the counter (excluding insulin) will require a prescription for each product for reimbursement through consumer-directed healthcare accounts like FSAs, HSAs and HRAs. However, it's important to note that this regulation only affects OTC drugs and medicines, while other OTC medical products, such as bandages, contact lens care and other first aid products are available for reimbursement without requiring a prescription.

While this regulation has somewhat limited how many OTC drugs and medicines an account holder can purchase, the Prescription Process at has dramatically simplified this step. When making a purchase, customers can either mail/fax their current prescription to our pharmacy partner or submit their physician's name, phone number and address, and we will take care of the rest. We also accept all FSA cards and major credit cards to make the payment process simple for our customers to maximize the potential of their healthcare benefits by combining the best FSA eligible drugs and medicines all in one place. For any additional questions regarding a product's eligibility, feel free to explore our Eligibility List.

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Specifically Not Covered

Not eligible without a prescription.

Legal Information / Regulations

Prescription Required. Information Letter (IL) 2009-0209; Notice 2010-59.

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