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News Release

Friday, December 03, 2004
Contact: Brendan LaCivita
Tel: 202-606-2402

OPM Director Kay Coles James Announces New Worksheet to Assist Federal Employees in Considering Health Savings Accounts

James also announces latest numbers on Health Savings Account website

Washington, D.C. - U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) Director Kay Coles James today announced the posting of a new Health Savings Account (HSA) worksheet to its HSA website,

"Federal employees need to be aware of the potential benefits HSAs can offer, and this worksheet will do just that," stated James. "To effectively educate Federal consumers on all health care options available to them, we must provide as many resources as possible."

High Deductible Health Plans (HDHP) with an HSA provide comprehensive health benefits coverage for major medical costs in a tax-advantaged way, enabling enrollees to build a savings for future medical expenses. HDHPs with an HSA give greater control over how an employee's health care dollars are spent - both HSA funds and out-of-pocket expenses. The worksheet helps individuals interested in an HSA to compare different HDHPs with each other and traditional health benefits plans in order to determine if an HDHP is right for them.

"President George W. Bush made HSAs possible to Federal employees when he signed into law the Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement and Modernization Act of 2003," James said. "Because the president recognizes that the best way to keep health care costs down is to allow consumer choice, it is my job to make certain we educate Federal employees on their health care options. This new worksheet is a helpful tool because it gives employees an idea what their out-of-pocket health care costs could be."

OPM's HSA website has proven to be very popular. To date, more than 180,000 unique users have visited the OPM HSA website, and almost 15,500 visitors have registered their e-mail addresses in the website database requesting more information.

"The fact that the HSA website is so popular shows how much interest there is with this new health care option," said James. "It's in every Federal employee's best interest to consider how they and their families may benefit by enrolling in a health plan with an HSA."

For 2005, Federal employees will have over 200 health care options from which to choose in the Federal Employees Health Benefits program, including, for the first time, two nationwide HDHPs, as well as geographically based HDHPs in 34 states plus the District of Columbia.

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OPM leads and serves the Federal Government in enterprise human resources management by delivering policies and services to achieve a trusted, effective civilian workforce. By Empowering Excellence in Government through Great People, we provide leadership and support to U.S. agencies on issues including human resources policy and oversight, background investigations, federal employee benefits, retirement services, guidance on labor-management relations, and programs to improve workforce performance. For more information, visit or follow OPM on Twitter, Facebook, or LinkedIn.

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