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News Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, December 16, 2004
Contact: Brenda Bertrand
Tel: 202-606-2402

OPM's Health Savings Account Website Attracts 203,059 Visitors

Washington, D.C. -- The U.S. Office of Personnel Management's Health Savings Account website continues to draw increasing attention. To date, 203,059 Federal employees have logged on to the site since its September 20 debut. Additionally, nearly 16,000 have registered their e-mail addresses in the website database requesting more information.

This latest number shows a significant increase in individuals who have accessed the Health Savings Account (HSA) website (www.opm.gov/hsa) to learn about new High Deductible Health Plans and accompanying HSAs being offered to Federal employees next year through the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Program. The 2004 FEHB Open Season recently closed after a successful run from November 8, 2004 through December 13, 2004.

OPM Director Kay Coles James said, "The Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) program is all about choice, and making affordable, quality plans available that meet the needs of Federal employees, retirees and their families. HSAs offer a new and flexible option to the Federal employee as they broaden the number of offerings in the FEHB. Employees have clearly demonstrated their interest in learning more about this option this year, and I am certain interest will continue to grow."

President George W. Bush made HSAs available to Federal employees with the signing of the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003.

In response to the act, Director James designed Health Savings Accounts as tax-advantaged products that empower enrollees in High Deductible Health Plans (HDHP) to use their medical dollars wisely and save money for future medical needs. In 2005, the FEHB program is offering 18 HDHPs, through which HSA accounts are available.

James is committed to educating Federal employees on these new benefit plans. To assist with the process of educating employees and stakeholders, OPM added a new HSA worksheet to the OPM HSA website, www.opm.gov/hsa/. The worksheet assists Federal employees in calculating the potential benefits HSAs can offer.

Additionally, OPM previously posted to its website answers to frequently asked questions about the HSA product. The posting "frequently asked questions" and answers were also a result of enormous interest in the new health-care product, as registered by the total number of visitors to OPM's HSA web site.

Health Savings Accounts are tax-advantaged products that empower enrollees in High Deductible Health Plans (HDHP) to use their medical dollars wisely and save money for future medical needs. In 2005, the FEHB Program is offering 18 HDHPs, through which HSA accounts are available.

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Our mission is to Recruit, Retain and Honor a World-Class Workforce to Serve the American People. OPM supports U.S. agencies with personnel services and policy leadership including staffing tools, guidance on labor-management relations and programs to improve work force performance.


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