The Herald of Everett, Washington
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Published: Tuesday, December 11, 2012, 12:01 a.m.
Health care act

Cap on spending accounts hurts us

We recently had the open enrollment period for our medical insurance and benefits. We, luckily, have excellent insurance, with low co-pays, low deductibles and high coverage. We also have a flexible spending account (FSA), which makes medical bills more affordable, by allowing us to use pre-tax money to pay for what our insurance doesn't cover.
Many families with severely ill, disabled, or learning-disabled children use FSAs to help pay for non-covered care. When electing how much money to put into my flexible spending account for next year, I learned that, due to the Affordable Care Act, the maximum I can put into my FSA is now $2,500 a year for our entire family. Well, there are six people in our family, all of whom will go to the doctor at some point next year, and I have one child with a condition that requires me to pay $125 per week out of pocket, as it is not covered by my insurance, even though I have very, very good coverage.
Putting pre-tax money into an FSA makes this much more affordable. The "Affordable Care" Act is now taking money out of my pocket, and away from my family, and giving it to someone else even though we really need it to treat my child. It is doing the same for the families of many other very vulnerable children. How is that affordable care?

Michelle Haneberg
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Herald Editorial Board

Jon Bauer, Opinion Editor:

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Feel strongly about something? Share it with the community by writing a letter to the editor. Send letters by e-mail to, by fax to 425-339-3458 or mail to The Herald - Letters, P.O. Box 930, Everett, WA 98206. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We'll only publish your name and hometown.) We reserve the right to edit letters, but if you keep yours to 250 words or less, we won’t ask you to shorten it. If your letter is published, please wait 30 days before submitting another. Have a question about letters? Contact Carol MacPherson at or 425-339-3472.