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When it Comes to HSAs, Education is Not Enough

Ray Hill
Nov 25, 2019 12:00:00 PM

Most employees tend to dread hearing terms like, “employee benefits,” “benefit enrollment”—and yes—even, “health savings account.”      

The dread stems from the simple fact that those employees feel they don’t have a solid understanding of their benefit options, and that many of those options are too complex. This cycle of uncertainty and confusion leads to employees sticking with the benefit choices they “know”—oftentimes simply what they’ve always had or chosen in the past—regardless of if those choices are the best option for them in the short or long term.

When it comes to employee benefits, and specifically health savings accounts, this is a critical issue that needs to be addressed.

While HSAs have been around for more than 15 years, and while the number of employees enrolling in HSA-eligible high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) continues to increase substantially year over year, the whole concept of HSAs still seems to be shrouded in mystery to most—along with a fair deal of misconception. And that even includes current HSA participants. While more than 25 million Americans currently have health savings accounts, many still struggle to understand HSA basics, which more often than not leads to them either underutilizing or not utilizing their HSA. That’s no good for employees or their employers.

The Education Onslaught

We know that employees—even those who currently have HSAs—aren’t confident in their HSA knowledge. So, what’s the fix? For many employers, plan administrators and others, the solution is to add more education into the mix.

That education comes by the “traditional” way of informational brochures, handouts, webpages, videos, seminars and more. And in a perfect world, all of these educational materials would provide employees with the knowledge they need to break out of their comfort zone and realize the many benefits of using an HSA, and why more often than not, pairing an HDHP with an HSA is their best option when it comes to controlling their healthcare costs and leading a path to better financial health.

But we live in the real world. And the reality is, while educational materials do help some, they don’t bridge the gap needed for most. Because life is busy, and employees have a lot of questions that they need simple answers to when it comes to health savings accounts. Questions on topics like:

  •  HSA eligibility
  •  HSA enrollment
  •  HSA contributions
  •  HSA eligible expenses
  •  HSA rules and regulations
  •  HSA tax benefits
  •  HSA paperwork and processes


Bottom line—there’s just not enough time in the day for employees to proactively educate themselves, even if the educational materials are there for them. More HSA education simply isn’t enough.

Bend HSA – Built for Beginners and to Break Barriers

At Bend, we recognize the barriers most employees face when exploring an HDHP with an HSA. They’re asking themselves things like:

  •  Am I even eligible for an HSA, and if I am, how do I enroll?
  •  How do I estimate my healthcare expenses and determine my HSA contributions?
  •  Will I lose unused HSA contributions at the end of the year?
  •  Do I need to waste my time documenting expenses, saving receipts and checking HSA eligibility?
  •  What are the actual tax benefits I’ll see from using an HSA?


That’s why we’ve structured everything we do to go beyond education, and to provide quick and clear answers to questions that pop up at any point of the HSA journey.

With a Bend HSA, you don’t have to be a financial expert to maximize your HSA and immediately begin to see benefits. In fact, you don’t even need any real HSA knowledge at all to be able to leverage our industry-leading platform.

A Bend HSA is built for beginners and designed with simple ease of use in mind from the very start. Even opening a Bend HSA is simple. Just follow a few quick steps online, and in minutes, your account is set up. You can then link your personal bank account to make reimbursements easy. And you can also link any personal credit or debit cards you use to make healthcare purchases.

That’s about all you have to do to get started. No reading lengthy tutorials, setup guides or FAQs—no watching confusing setup videos or other resources. We’ve designed our Bend HSAs to be able to be used worry-free right out of the gates by taking advantage of advanced technologies like AI (artificial intelligence) and machine learning to automate many of the manual processes required by other HSA providers. And it’s at this time that we also introduce you to another important feature that sets us apart—the Bend Advisor.

The Bend Advisor – Sit Back and Let Us Work for You

At Bend, we understand that getting control over healthcare costs can feel overwhelming, especially when dipping into uncharted waters like a health savings account. So we make it easy to learn as you go so you can spend more time living and less time worrying.

With a Bend HSA, your path to better financial health gets underway the day you open your Bend HSA account, regardless of your HSA knowledge level. Your Bend HSA comes equipped with the Bend Advisor—a unique tool that uses AI and machine learning to help you track, manage and better use your HSA account. 

The Bend Advisor works in real time and evolves with you. Our innovative platform learns individual behaviors and situations, predicts outcomes and delivers actionable advice that helps you manage your health savings efficiently and effectively.

From the start, the Bend Advisor does much of the “day-to-day” HSA work for you. It pulls in data from your other accounts—like checking, credit cards, payroll and health plans—and guides and makes recommendations for you every step of the way so you can feel confident that you’re growing and spending your savings wisely while taking advantage of every eligible HSA expense opportunity. Other HSA providers only offer basic transactions such as balance checking, transaction oversight and simple calculators. Bend is the only HSA provider that offers an innovative and intuitive tool like the Bend Advisor.

With Bend and the Bend Advisor, you can be confident knowing that your HSA is set up from the start to boost your bottom line. No expenses are left behind and you don’t ever need to worry about remembering what you paid for, with what account and if those expenses were eligible or not. You can also choose to pay for expenses outside your HSA and bank expenses to be reimbursed from your HSA in the future. The Bend Advisor and our cutting-edge HSA system will find your eligible expenses for you, and leave no expenses behind, helping you maximize your HSA benefits. You learn as you go, and before you know it, you will be an HSA expert.

The Bend Advisor also powers our on-demand conversational assistant, so you can ask HSA-related questions at any time and get quick, clear answers. You’re never left in the dark with Bend, and you’ll never have to waste time with cumbersome online searches or independent research.

HSA Contributions and Administration Made Easy

At Bend, we also make funding your HSA simple and streamlined, while removing the stress of contribution pre-planning. As a Bend HSA accountholder, you can make one-time contributions, or lifts, into your account on-demand. You can also change pretax contributions at any time, which can make a huge difference in your financial wellness, since our innovative system identifies eligible expenses you may have forgotten. Bottom line, you have the HSA contribution flexibility you need to adjust your strategy as your life and specific situation changes.

And on the employer side, a Bend HSA offers capabilities to simplify the contribution process by integrating with payroll providers, which means no additional work for employers as pretax deductions are changed. In addition to payroll integration, our HSA system makes it easy for employers to manage an HSA program by doing most of the work through intuitive automations and providing easy-to-access reports on changes and other important account highlights. Whether an employee or an employer, your life is made easier with a Bend HSA.

Your HSA, Where You Need it

We’re also committed to meeting you wherever you are when you need to handle anything related to your HSA, any time of day or night. Our powerful Bend HSA platform and responsive design offers anytime, anywhere access to your account. With one click you can:

  •  Fund your account and make or adjust contributions
  •  Get reimbursed for eligible medical expenses
  •  Track your HSA expenses
  •  Pay with Samsung Pay and Apple Pay
  •  Ask HSA questions and get real-time support


And you can also always find more HSA education and resources wherever you are and whenever you need it.

Remember, the Bend Advisor is always there, and when you link your other spending accounts to your HSA, it’ll provide guidance and assistance to help you make the most of your HSA and naturally learn what expenses qualify as HSA expenses. With the Bend Advisor, you’ll always have help to keep your HSA top of mind and you’ll always have access to continuous education on your own terms, whenever it’s needed.

Want More HSA Education? Bend is Always Here for You.

With Bend, even before you’re an accountholder, you can benefit from our deep industry expertise and technology focus. We’re here for you every step of the way with the support and resources you need. We want every individual and accountholder to know the positive potential a Bend HSA can make when it comes to their financial wellness.

Visit bendhsa.com/resources to find everything from comprehensive FAQs, to helpful videos. And you can always connect with us via live chat on bendhsa.com, by email at support@bendhsa.com or by phone at (877) 201-3235.

Because at Bend, while we know that HSA education alone isn’t enough, we also know that making understanding HSAs as easy as possible means providing comprehensive resources regardless of where you’re at with your knowledge of HSAs.  

The Bend HSA - An HSA for Everyone

Bend's unique technology helps every type of HSA user, from the non-funder or spender, to the saver and investor. Check out our infographic to see how the Bend HSA can work for all your employees. 

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