Critics of impending changes to medical spending accounts have been arguing for months to push back provisions that will take effect by the beginning of next year. Last week, the IRS issued guidance on such changes that aims to clarify certain restrictions on medical expense reimbursement through these accounts.

According to IRS guidelines, beginning Jan. 1, employees won't be able to make over-the-counter drug purchases using their flexible spending account or health reimbursement account unless they have a prescription.

Guidelines state the cost of an OTC drug or medicine can't be reimbursed unless the item is a prescribed drug, or if the medication is available over the counter and the purchaser obtains a prescription. Insulin will also be reimbursed even if there isn't a prescription.

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