It’s that time of year again: cold and flu season is starting—while your 2019 benefits period is likely coming to a close. If you have funds left in your Flexible Spending Account (FSA), remember that those remaining tax-free FSA dollars may be ‘use it or lose it’ funds.* That makes it the perfect time to think about spending down that money by arming yourself against cold and flu viruses.
Unfortunately, getting sick happens to the best of us. The average adult in the U.S. will contract two to three colds per year. When it comes to the flu, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that, from 2017 to 2018, they recorded 49 million cases of influenza in the United States.
Luckily, you can spend your remaining FSA dollars on preventative measures like a flu shot, or, if it’s already too late, you can cover co-pays for doctor visits, prescription medications, and over-the-counter (OTC) medications that relieve cold and flu symptoms.
OTC Options for Cold and Flu Symptom Relief
We’ve created a list of common OTC medications, supplements, and devices to treat symptoms associated with cold and flu like body aches, fever, cough, sore throat, runny nose, nasal congestion, headaches, and more. To use your FSA dollars for OTC products, you may need your doctor to sign off on your medical need for these items, but to make life easier, you can check out the CYC Marketplace to buy qualified products for cold and flu symptom relief. There’s even coupons!
*Be sure to check with your benefits administrator in case your funds roll over or if there is a grace period as part of your plan.