Dehydration Treatment: FSA Eligibility

Dehydration Treatment: requires a prescription to be eligible with a Flexible Spending Account (FSA)

Dehydration treatments are eligible over-the-counter (OTC) medicines with a prescription with a flexible spending account (FSA), health savings account (HSA) or a health reimbursement arrangement (HRA). Dehydration treatments reimbursement is not eligible with a dependent care flexible spending account (DCFSA) or a limited care flexible spending account (LCFSA).

What is dehydration?

Dehydration refers a state in which the human body is extracts more water from cells and blood vessels than the body is brings in, which is a highly dangerous condition that can affect individuals of any age. While not drinking enough water is an obvious culprit, outside factors can also contribute to bringing about a state of dehydration, including diarrhea/vomiting, fever, burns, and excessive sweating or urination (Mayo Clinic).

How is dehydration treated?

First and foremost, ingesting more water is the easiest means of combating dehydration, but this is not always possible in some situations or may require additional supplementation, which is why there are a number of OTC dehydration treatments on the market to help alleviate the issue. The most common are oral re-hydration solutions, which consist of water and salts that are designed to replenish fluids and electrolytes in the body (Mayo Clinic).

These solutions are especially helpful to have around the home or in a first-aid kit, and they can be vital in treating a major stomach virus or flu by controlling the most debilitating effects of the ailment and promoting the recovery process. Room temperature fluids are best in these situations, and they should be given intermittently to the sick individual in small doses to ensure that it can be kept down. In most cases, dehydration treatments are available over-the-counter and should be taken as directed to combat dehydration symptoms and supplemented with the ingestion of liquids.

Why do dehydration treatments require a prescription for reimbursement?

As a result of the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), as of January 1, 2011, OTC items containing an active medical ingredient require a prescription for reimbursement with an FSA, HSA or HRA. To reimburse the cost of OTC medicines and drugs under FSAs, HSAs and other consumer spending accounts, account holders must submit a prescription for each product.

However, not every OTC product falls under this distinction and thousands of products continue to remain eligible without a prescription including bandages, first aid supplies, most sunscreens, diagnostic products, products for infant care and so much more. For more information on a specific product, be sure to consult 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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