AHIP touts strong enrollment in plans with health savings accounts

The health insurance industry and Republicans argue that the accounts push patients to more carefully consider their healthcare expenses.

"HSA plans encourage individuals to take an active role in their health care decisions while stretching their health care dollars," said AHIP President and CEO Karen Ignagni in a statement Wednesday.

The group's latest annual census found that enrollment in HSAs has more than tripled in the last six years.

Growth is particularly strong in the large-group market as employers embrace health plans that include HSAs.

Opponents of the accounts, including some Democrats, argue that the government loses necessary revenue on HSAs because of their tax advantage. 

Lawmakers frequently debate the plans' merits.