Are prescription drugs from Canada eligible?

Are prescription drugs from Canada or other countries outside the United States eligible for reimbursements from an FSA or HSA?
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  • Generally, no.

    IRS Publication 502 states, “In general, you cannot include in your medical expenses for the cost of a prescribed drug brought in (or ordered shipped) from another country, because you can only include the cost of a drug that was imported legally.”

    There are two exceptions to be aware of:
    (1) Prescribed drugs that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announces can be legally imported by individuals
    (2) Prescribed drugs purchased and consumed in another country, if the drugs are legal in both the U.S. and the other country. The FDA takes the position that “virtually all shipments of prescription drugs imported from a Canadian pharmacy will run afoul of the [Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic] Act.”

    The IRS and FDA position as of today remains that it is generally illegal for individuals to import prescription drugs from Canada.
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