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Trade Associations Applaud Bipartisan Legislation to Expand Access to Dietary Supplements

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supplementsThe Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA), American Herbal Products Association (AHPA), Council for Responsible Nutrition (CRN), Natural Products Association (NPA) and the United Natural Products Alliance (UNPA) have applauded the introduction of the Dietary Supplements Access Act. Introduced on July 20 by U.S. Representatives Darin LaHood (R-IL), Brendan Boyle (D-PA), John Curtis (R-UT) and Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ), the bipartisan legislation will provide greater choices to consumers by allowing them to use Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs) and Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) to purchase dietary supplements, giving millions of Americans increased health and wellness options for better self-care, according to the representatives.

Results of a 2023 HSA & FSA Reimbursement Study confirmed that most Americans who currently have an FSA or HSA (78 percent) want the flexibility to choose how best to use their pre-tax dollars to stay healthy by using these accounts to purchase dietary supplements. Under current law, FSAs and HSAs allow employees to put aside money before it has been taxed to pay for healthcare costs related to medical care, including certain prescription drugs, dental and vision care, OTCs, menstrual products and other health-related items. However, the law does not currently recognize dietary supplements as “qualified medical expenses.” Estimates show around 60 million consumers already utilize FSAs and HSAs to save money on eligible health care expenses. Additionally, according to Health E-Commerce, U.S. consumers who shop at its affiliated e-commerce stores consistently confirm they believe vitamins and other dietary supplements should be FSA and HSA eligible.

“Americans overwhelmingly want increased flexibility to take charge of their own health, and this legislation would deliver the type of reforms today’s proactive consumers are asking for and deserve,” said CHPA President & CEO Scott Melville. “By allowing dietary supplements to be added to the list of qualified medical expenses, this bill builds on previous legislative efforts, including a bipartisan victory in 2020, that expanded FSA and HSA eligibility to include over-the-counter medicines and feminine hygiene products. CHPA applauds Representatives LaHood, Boyle, Curtis, and Gottheimer for spearheading this effort, which will further empower millions of consumers to best determine how to use their pre-tax dollars to stay healthy and practice responsible self-care.”

Michael McGuffin, president of AHPA, said, “Putting consumers in charge of their health choices and allowing them to make informed decisions about their healthcare–as this legislation would do–makes good policy sense. Treating purchases of dietary supplements as eligible expenditures under HSAs and FSAs would incentivize healthy behaviors and consumer choice. Reps. LaHood, Boyle, Curtis, and Gottheimer recognize the contributions of these products to maintaining and improving the health and wellness of Americans. AHPA is grateful for their leadership on this issue and wholeheartedly supports this important measure.”

“CRN welcomes the introduction of this legislation,” said President and CEO Steve Mister. “Dietary supplements play critical roles to fill nutrient gaps and promote overall health and wellness. They not only can reduce risks associated with chronic conditions but can also lead to billions in savings for America’s health care system, as evidenced by the CRN Foundation’s recent health care cost savings study, Supplements to Savings. We look forward to working with the bill sponsors to advance this much-needed policy, so that consumers can finally use their HSAs and FSAs to purchase vitamins, minerals, and other supplements like probiotics, herbals and omega 3s.”

NPA president and CEO Daniel Fabricant added, “Expanding access to nutritional supplements is an innovative solution that will keep more Americans healthy, which is the most cost-effective public health policy of all. With industry champions like Reps. LaHood, Boyle, Curtis, and Gottheimer sponsoring this legislation, we have a good foundation for advancing this bill through Congress. As we build momentum and additional support for this proposal, we will work closely with congressional leadership to strengthen the legislation. We are grateful for the sponsors championing legislation focused on better nutrition for our nation and for those of us who represent the millions of Americans who enjoy, sell, distribute and manufacture these important products.”

“UNPA commends the sponsors of this common-sense, bipartisan legislation for recognizing the important role that dietary supplements have in helping Americans lead healthier lives,” said President Loren Israelsen. “Taxpayers deserve the choice to control their own spending, and this long overdue bill will provide greater incentives for adopting and maintaining healthy lifestyles. UNPA will be working hard for its passage.”

For more information, visit www.chpa.orgwww.crnusa.orgwww.ahpa.org, www.npanational.org and www.unpa.com.

 

 

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