Health Spending Account

The health spending account (HSA) is used to pay for eligible medical and dental expenses beyond those covered by the supplementary health care (SHC) and dental care plans.

Eligible support staff receive $1,250 to divide between their Health Spending Account (HSA) and their Personal Spending Account (PSA).

Part-time staff receive an annual $1,000 credit, which is not prorated.

APO and MAPS positions each include a $750 Health Spending Account. Any unused credits can be carried over for one year. Learn more about APO benefits and MAPS benefits.

Fund allocation for support staff

Each fall starting in October, support staff are instructed to divide their $1,250 between their HSA and PSA for the following year. If a staff member takes no action, returns from a leave or is hired after the open enrollment dates, the default amount of $1,000 for HSA and $250 for PSA will be allocated for the calendar year. This amount is not prorated.

Allocate your 2023 accounts

Eligible Expenses

  • Any coinsurance payments and amounts in excess of coverage limits under the SHC and dental plan
  • Charges for dental procedures in excess of the regular dental plan's payment limits
  • Vision care expenses such as eye exams, glasses, contact lenses and laser eye surgery in excess of the coverage under the supplementary health care plan
  • Prescribed lifestyle benefit expenses such as nutritional supplements
  • Paramedical practitioners including chiropractors, acupuncturists, optometrists, massage therapists, physiotherapists and psychologists in excess of SHC plan coverage. Practitioner registration number must be provided in order for the claim to be considered for reimbursement. Massage therapist services are subject to Sun Life accreditation standards and must have 2,200 hours of certification.

To view delisted providers (providers that Sun Life will not reimburse for), you must log in to, click on "Coverage Information". On the right hand side, select "Delisted providers list" to ensure that the service provider has not been delisted.

How to submit a claim

Direct billing from your HSA is not available. Make a claim through the Sun Life Members Services website or their mobile app. Information about access to the Sun Life web can be obtained at Sun Life Member's Services webpage.

You can also use the Sun Life Extended Health Care and Health Spending Account and Dental & Health Spending Account claim forms so you can submit both your standard benefit claim and your Health Spending Account claim at the same time.

Keep copies of your original receipts for 12 months in case you need to submit them. If the original receipt was sent in for payment through your standard benefit plan with Sun Life and you did not indicate coordination with your HSA, you will have to include the Explanation of Benefits with your claim. Sun Life will require the Explanation of Benefits statement that you received along with your payment from the other carrier.

Claims deadline

Expenses must be submitted for reimbursement by March 31 of the year following the year the expense was incurred to be eligible for payment.

Managing Your Health Spending Account

Your HSA can be managed via the web on the Sun Life Member Services website or the mobile app. This site will provide up-to-date information on your account status including claims paid and your account balance.

Information regarding access to the Sun Life web can be obtained at Sun Life Member's Services webpage.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the plan year for my HSA?
The plan year for the PSA is the calendar year.
Does my balance carry forward into the following year?
Yes. Unused credits can be carried forward for one year only to pay for expenses incurred during the following benefit year. At the end of the second benefit year (December 31), any unused carried forward credits are forfeited by the member. For example, credits deposited on January 1, 2020 and not used by December 31, 2021 will be forfeited.
Are expenses incurred from my dependent eligible?
Yes, your health spending account can be used to cover expenses incurred by you and any dependents who qualify for the medical tax credit. HSA reimbursements are directed to the account before tax is deducted and are not subject to income tax.

A detailed list of eligible expenses can be obtained through the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) website. This account can help you cover expenses for extended family members who would not be eligible under the university's benefit plan.
Do I still get the full HSA benefit if my employment ends before the calendar year?
Yes, you are still eligible for the full amount. However, your expenses must be incurred during the term of your employment with the U of A. Expenses must be submitted for reimbursement by March 31 of the year following the year the expense was incurred to be eligible for payment.
Are my reimbursements subject to income tax?
No. HSA reimbursements are not subject to income tax.
Other questions?
Contact the Sun Life Customer Care Centre for prompt answers to any questions you might have about your HSA at 1-800-361-6212. Further information about the Health Spending Account is available through Member Services on the Sun Life website or the mobile app.