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Public Statements

Preserving Health Care Choices for Americans

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC

Mr. PAULSEN. Mr. Speaker, more and more American consumers are discovering a provision in the President's new health care law that prevents them from buying simple, over-the-counter medications using their health care savings accounts or their flexible spending accounts unless they first get a doctor's prescription.

Instead of walking into their local drugstores to use their HSAs or their FSAs, Americans are now forced to visit a doctor and pay a standard copay before finally receiving a prescription to buy medicines like Advil or Claritin. Does this sound burdensome? That's because it absolutely is.

Mr. Speaker, millions of Americans use HSAs and FSAs for their flexibility and portability, yet this new health care law is taking that away and is wreaking havoc on patients and also increasing burdens on physicians.

We need to repeal this onerous provision, and that's why I've introduced legislation that does exactly that, with bipartisan support.

Mr. Speaker, this week, the House Ways and Means Committee will hold a hearing on the use of HSAs and FSAs on over-the-counter medicine practices, and I hope we'll all agree that individuals, families, patients, and doctors make the best decisions for their health care needs, not the government. It's time to do away with this onerous prescription requirement.

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