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Can I Use HSA or FSA on Massage?

In many cases, a massage will be covered by your insurance plan, whether you use an HSA or FSA. Follow these steps to make sure you’re qualified.

1. Start with HR

Before you do anything else, reach out to your HR department or your medical insurance carrier and ask if massage therapy is considered a covered treatment. In some situations, an insurance policy won’t cover massages, even if you get a prescription from a doctor.

Most people who have an FSA or HSA have no trouble covering their massages.

2. Doctor visit

Once you’ve gotten the go-ahead from your insurance carrier, schedule an appointment with your primary care physician. Pro tip for this step of the process: Don’t start by just saying you want a massage. You’ll need to first explain your specific symptoms.

There are a wide variety of mental and physical conditions that could qualify for a massage. Stress-related symptoms, circulation issues caused by diabetes or hypertension, sciatica, arthritis, tinnitis, fibromyalgia, anxiety, depression and chronic back pain are all examples that could qualify for massage therapy.

Preparation is key to this discussion. Don’t be afraid to bring case studies of people who’ve alleviated similar symptoms through the power of massage therapy. You could also mention specific massage therapy treatment, which can help you illustrate the legitimacy of this type of care.

3. Get a prescription

Once you and your doctor have talked it over, you’ll need them to write a prescription for a massage. In your insurance’s eyes, this acts as proof that you actually need an HSA or FSA massage.

Your prescription will need to include the following:

• A reason you need massage therapy, such as a medical condition or injury.

• The number of sessions you’ll require each month. Do you need a massage every month? Or once every 1-2 weeks? For regular massages, you should consider getting a package of massage sessions to lower the cost of each session.

• The duration of the treatment. How long are you going to need this treatment? Should they be 60-minute, 75-minute or 90-minute massages? Your doctor will be able to guide you in the right direction on this one. You can also change the length, time of day, and cadence as needed.

Getting a prescription is easier than it sounds, so there’s no need to stress. Healthcare providers often write prescriptions for things like massage or acupuncture without requiring an in-person doctor visit. Your prescription can practically be as on-demand as your massage.

4. Use Your FSA or HSA for Massage

Once you have your prescription, just book an appointment with a massage therapy provider. In order to pay for your massage, you’ll just need to have your HSA or FSA debit card with you. Put these dollars to work for you!

Since the funds on your FSA plan expire at the end of the year, make sure you get the most of your benefits before time runs out. If you’re interested in using FSA savings, schedule a time to meet with a primary physician before the year is up. This way, you’ll be able to get the biggest bang from your insurance bucks.

How much will FSA save me?

So how much can you save on a massage with an FSA? Using an FSA for massage therapy can save you 30-40% a year on out-of-pocket expenses.

Things to keep in mind

When requesting a massage therapy prescription from a doctor, make sure you’re coming at it with the right intentions. The purpose of your health insurance is to cover medical expenses, and massage therapy can be a great way to benefit your wellness and healing. Be honest when speaking with your doctor regarding your symptoms.

In the same way, make sure you only use your HSA or FSA cards for massage therapy expenses if you have a prescription from your doctor. It’s also important that you keep track of your records for taxes.

Getting the most from your insurance

When it comes down to it, your insurance is there to keep you healthy. A massage can be a good remedy for many types of injuries and conditions. Take these steps to pay for medical massage with your FSA or HSA plan.

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