Herbal Medication: FSA Eligibility
What is herbal medication?
Herbal medication stems from the ancient and historical tradition of deriving medicines from plants and plant extracts. Herbal medication is also known as herbalism or botanical medicine. Some traditional forms of herbal medications are still in practice today, though more commonly herbal medication is found on the shelves of drug stores, having been processed and manufactured through artificial or semi-artificial means. Herbal medication is generally the active substance, or substances thought to be active, from a particular plant or plant extract, rendered consumable in whatever form the medication is intended to be applied through, and sold on shelves in modern commercial establishments (National Institute of Medical Herbalists).
Herbal medication varies in origin and intended use, as well as the means by which a medical condition or disease might be prevented, treated or alleviated. Herbal medication is only eligible for reimbursement with a consumer-directed healthcare account if a medical professional has diagnosed a medical condition or illness and written out a Letter of Medical Necessity (LMN) for the use of that herbal medication with respect to the medical condition or disease.
Herbal medication is usually sold Over-the-Counter (OTC) as a supplement, vitamin or home remedy without a specific scientific mechanism or medical benefit indicated. If, however, a physician has considered benefits of an herbal medication to be medically necessary in treating a medical condition, they may write a Letter of Medical Necessity which will allow the herbal medication to be reimbursed.