Walorski Introduces Bill to Support Homecare Needs for Older Americans
Bipartisan Legislation Would Allow Seniors to Use Health Savings Accounts for At-Home Care Services
WASHINGTON – U.S. Reps. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.), Katie Porter (D-Calif.), Adrian Smith (R-Neb.), and John Larson (D-Conn.) this week introduced bipartisan legislation to help older Americans living at home by allowing tax-free distributions from health savings accounts (HSAs) to cover qualified homecare services.
“Seniors who face health challenges but want to continue living at home often rely on at-home care services like assistance with eating, bathing, or taking their medications,” Congresswoman Walorski said. “These services play a critical role in helping older Americans live healthier, more independent lives. The bipartisan Homecare for Seniors Act will help seniors access the care they need by allowing them to use HSA funds for at-home health care services.”
“I’ve heard from older constituents in California’s 45th Congressional District about the importance of staying in their own homes while receiving care,” Congresswoman Porter said. “I’m proud to work with colleagues on both sides of the aisle on this legislation that would allow older Americans the freedom to put more of their own money into homecare.”
“Seniors should be able to age with dignity and stay in their homes as long as possible. Allowing Americans to use their own savings in Health Savings Accounts to pay for home health care is a common sense way to make this a more accessible option for Americans. I am proud to introduce this bill with Congresswoman Porter today,” said Congressman Larson.
“Folks who have paid into Health Savings Accounts their whole lives should be given flexibility to spend their own money on their needs. For many seniors, the ability to stay in their own homes while receiving care is of the utmost importance and can help save on health care costs in the long term” said Congressman Smith. “I am glad to be a cosponsor of this commonsense legislation which puts seniors first.”
“With health care costs ever growing, the home is the ideal and most efficient setting for seniors in need of assistance with activities of daily living,” said Calvin McDaniel, Director of Government Affairs for the National Association for Home Care and Hospice. “Relaxing restrictions on distributions of health savings account funds is a simple way to open up access to these services.”
HSAs allow individuals to set aside pre-tax money to pay for medical expenses. Many seniors who have paid into HSAs for years are unable to use these funds for qualified homecare expenses under current law. This legislation would make such expenses eligible.
Qualified home care provides seniors with services including assistance with eating, assistance with toileting, assistance with bathing, assistance with dressing, and assistance with continence or medication adherence.
The legislation is supported by the Homecare Association of America, Home Instead, the National Association for Home Care and Hospice, Leading Age, the National Alliance for Caregiving, the Alzheimer’s Foundation, the International Franchise Association, and the Caregiver Action Network.
Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District of Indiana, serving as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.