by r.s.

This post has been kicking around in my mind for a while, but recent events have convinced me now is the time to speak up.

High-deductible health insurance plans combined with health savings accounts (HSAs) don’t make any sense for insurance consumers. “Insurance” spreads risk among a pool of individuals. An HSA, on the other hand, provides no mechanism for spreading risk among individuals and no mechanism for spreading risk through time. The individual consumer simply hopes he or she can save some money before getting sick.

On top of that, the HSA introduces investment risk into the mix. The consumer who successfully saved some money now hopes that the stock market doesn’t crash right before he or she gets sick.

For all this risk, HSAs give the consumer extra control. However, I don’t want or need control; I am not an actuary or an investment advisor and do not pretend to be one on the weekends. I don’t think I’m alone.