David Imrie

Workplace benefits are one of the biggest reasons why employees stay with their employers and why candidates choose to work where they work. It’s vital that a company offers them. But for small businesses, this can be challenging because premiums can be costly.


Download our free guide on all the health benefits your employees need and  want.

So how do small business owners compete for top talent against bigger companies using benefits in Ontario? They turn to an Ontario health spending account (HSA).


An Ontario health spending account (HSA) is an alternative to the traditional workplace benefits that most companies give to their employees. With the traditional workplace benefits, the employer pays a premium (and sometimes the employee does as well) to an insurance company. These traditional healthcare benefits cover expenses in different categories such as dental, eye care, and paramedical. Employees receive a certain amount of coverage they’re able to claim for a particular category before the cap is met.

This kind of benefits program is one size fits all in nature and treats every employee the same. This isn’t the only way, or the best way, to provide benefits to employees, which is why an HSA is a popular alternative.

With an Ontario health spending account, how employees spend their health dollars is up to them. Gone are the categories of spending and the allotted dollar amounts. The employees can spend whatever amount of their total benefits money on whatever healthcare costs they need, which provides them with better coverage.


One of the pros of an Ontario health spending account is that employees receive better coverage. Gone are the days when employees can only spend a certain amount of money on a particular category of benefits. If they need to spend all of their health dollars on vision care, they can do so. If they need to split their coverage between prescriptions and massage therapy, they can do so.

The only limit is the amount of money they have to spend in a given year, not an arbitrary amount they’re allowed to spend per health category. With this kind of coverage, employees pay out of pocket less often and have peace of mind because they know they have the ability to take care of themselves and their families.


A health spending account gives everyone (employer and employee) more control. The employers gain greater control because they can control how much money is offered. There are no ever-increasing premiums to worry about.

The employees also gain more control because they’re in charge of what they spend their health dollars on. Having that control allows them to spread their health care dollars in the way that benefits them and their families the most, which makes health care costs less worrisome.

An added benefit to employers? Because employees are given that control, they’re more likely to remain with the company because it shows them their employers care about them and want them to have coverage that meets all their health needs, whatever they may be.


The only real con to an Ontario health spending account is the fact that it’s typically best for small businesses and entrepreneurs. This is an alternative benefits plan to traditional benefits packages. Depending on the size of your business, it might not be the best option for you.

An Ontario health spending account is beneficial if you’re a small business owner or entrepreneur looking for affordable coverage. It gives everyone more control, fosters loyalty from employees, and enables fewer dollars to be wasted on health care coverage that no one needs or uses.

All The Health Benefits Your Employees Need and Want

David Imrie

Dr. David Imrie founded RHSA Canada in 2009. Dr. Imrie is a medical doctor and former health insurance professional who has a passion for helping small businesses reduce their healthcare costs. As an executive in the insurance industry, he was shocked to find that so many common healthcare services are covered only partially by most insured plans, when employees were entitled to 100% coverage for all prescription drugs, dental services, and other healthcare expenses. Since leaving the insurance industry in 2001, Dr. Imrie committed to using newer technology to develop a better alternative program for small business health benefits.
Find David Imrie on: