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Personal Health Investment Today Act (PHIT) 

Download the full PHIT Infographic

The PHIT Act (HR.1218 and S.2218) would make it easier for Americans to be physically active.

Specifically, it would allow individuals or families to pay for gym memberships, fitness equipment, exercise videos and youth sports league fees with dollars from pre-tax accounts, like flexible spending accounts (FSAs) and health savings accounts (HSAs). 

How does PHIT help your club or fitness business?

The PHIT Act will make physical activity more affordable. Your members stand to save 20-30% on their fitness expenses if PHIT passes. Club members will be able to use pre-tax health savings accounts to pay for their memberships, training fees, and fitness equipment the same way they currently use the accounts for prescription medications and doctor visits. 

How can I help get the PHIT Act passed?

#1. PHIT has bipartisan support in Congress, but we need your help. By educating your members about PHIT, you can help lay the groundwork for the legislation’s success. The Get PHIT Toolkit will help you educate your health club members about the importance of PHIT and how they'll benefit. So, download the Get PHIT Toolkit, share it with your staff, and start engaging your members.

#2. IHRSA is calling on you to contact the representative and senators that were elected to represent you and your business, and ask them to help make health club memberships more accessible in America by supporting PHIT. Once the 115th Congress is in session, IHRSA will launch a full PHIT Campaignstay tuned.


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What's Happening with PHIT now?

December 2016 update: The election has made PHIT a front and center opportunity.

Come January, healthcare reform and tax reform will move to the top of the agenda which creates two opportunities for PHIT to be included within broader healthcare or tax reform legislation.

PHIT Activity 

  • PHIT was introduced in October of 2015 as S.2218 by U.S. Senators John Thune (R-S.D.), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.), and Joe Donnelly (D-Ind.). 
  • PHIT was introduced in March of 2015 in the House as H.R.1218 by Reps. Boustany (R-LA) and Kind (D-WI). 
  • The PHIT Act was scored July 22, 2014 at an estimated $2.5 billion dollars over 10 years. There is ample evidence showing that this cost will be more than offset by health care savings derived from Americans becoming more active. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, America spends around $74 billion each year on physical inactivity-related medical costs.

Why is PHIT Important?

  • 64% of American adults and 34% of American children suffer from overweight, obesity, and physical inactivity. These rising rates of obesity and Americans’ proclivity for inactivity are resulting in double digit annual increases in healthcare costs to the government and business.
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates that healthcare costs directly associated with inactivity were $76.6 billion in 2000; roughly one-third of those costs ($25 billion) fall directly on U.S. taxpayers since approximately one in three Americans is covered by a taxpayer-funded health plan.
  • The PHIT Act would help to reverse the trend of increasing physical inactivity and obesity by eliminating a federal policy barrier and providing an important tax incentive to promote exercise.
  • Public health experts agree that regular physical activity substantially reduces the risk and symptoms of numerous chronic diseases and medical conditions, resulting in fewer hospitalizations, physician visits, medications and lower healthcare costs.
  • Under the current set-up, Americans predominantly use pre-tax accounts to pay for treatment and detection of illnesses: prescription drugs, doctor visits, examinations and screenings.
  • Depending upon their income tax bracket, the PHIT Act could help Americans save 20-30% on the cost of physical activities, exercise programs and related expenses.
  • The PHIT Act tax incentive represents an important tangible benefit that the federal government can provide to promote healthier lifestyles and reverse the rising costs of treating obesity-related chronic diseases.

Frequently Asked Questions about the PHIT Act

1. Why is the PHIT Act necessary?
The PHIT Act would eliminate a federal policy barrier and create a financial incentive to engage in physical fitness and exercise.

2. What will the PHIT Act do?
The PHIT Act would change the types of expenditures that could be payable out of tax-favored investment accounts (such as FSAs and HSAs). Under the current set-up, Americans predominantly use pre-tax accounts to pay for treatment and detection of illnesses: prescription drugs, doctor visits, examinations and screenings.  
The PHIT Act would allow consumers to set aside up to $1,000 annually ($2,000 for married couples filing jointly) from their tax-favored accounts to make expenditures related to prevention in the form of increased physical activity, allowing fitness center dues, payments for some exercise equipment, and other fees associated with physical activity programs to be paid with pre-tax dollars. 

3. What will the PHIT Act cost?
IHRSA met with the Congressional Joint Committee on Taxation and requested a “score” for the PHIT Act, which determines the total cost of implementing the bill over a ten year period. The bill was "scored" in July, 2014 at a cost of $2.5 billion dollars over 10 years. 

Supporters of PHIT in the 114th Congress

  • Rep. Ron Kind (D-WI)
  • Rep. Peter King (R-NY)
  • Rep. Albio Sires (D-NJ)
  • Rep. Michael Doyle (D-PA)
  • Rep. Rick Allen (R-GA)
  • Rep. Rodney Davis (R-IL)
  • Rep. Richard Hanna (R-NY)
  • Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-CA)
  • Rep. Dennis Ross (R-FL)
  • Rep. John Lewis (D-GA)
  • Rep. Steve Israel (D-NY)
  • Rep. Sam Graves (R-MO)
  • Rep. Ralph Lee Abraham (R-LA)
  • Rep. Jared Huffman (D-CA)
  • Rep. Tom Emmer (R-MN)
  • Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA)
  • Rep. Bill Pascrell (D-NJ)
  • Rep. Richard Nolan (D-MN)
  • Rep. Cheri Bustos (D-IL)
  • Rep. Collin Peterson (D-MN)
  • Rep. Frank Lucas (R-OK)
  • Rep. Timothy Walz (D-MN)
  • Rep. Scott Peters (D-CA)
  • Rep. Robert Dold (R-IL)
  • Rep. Walter Jones (R-NC)
  • Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA)
  • Rep. Bill Shuster (R-PA)
  • Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR)
  • Rep. Lou Barletta (R-PA)
  • Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO)
  • Rep. Marc Veasey (D-TX)
  • Rep. David Scott (D-GA)
  • Rep. David Roe (R-TN)
  • Rep. Henry Johnson (D-GA)
  • Rep. Donna Edwards (D-MD)
  • Rep. Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ)
  • Rep. John Kline (R-MN)
  • Rep. Randy Weber (R-TX)
  • Rep. Brad Ashford (D-NE)
  • Rep. Mike Kelly (R-PA)
  • Rep. Bill Huizenga (R-MI)
  • Rep. Jeff Denham (R-CA)
  • Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX)
  • Rep. David Loebsack (D-IA)
  • Rep. Theodore Deutch (D-FL)
  • Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-AR)
  • Rep. Cedric Richmond (D-LA)
  • Rep. Robert Brady (D-PA)
  • Rep. Raul Ruiz (D-CA)
  • Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA)
  • Rep. David Valadao (R-CA)
  • Rep. Mike Quigley (D-IL)
  • Rep. Markwayne Mullin (R-OK)
  • Rep. William Keating (D-MA)
  • Rep. Luis Gutierrez (D-IL)
  • Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-AZ)
  • Rep. Pete Sessions (R-TX)
  • Rep. C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger (D-MD)
  • Rep. Corrine Brown (D-FL)
  • Rep. Ann Wagner (R-MO)
  • Rep. Mike Bishop (R-MI)
  • Rep. Barbara Lee (D-CA)
  • Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-OR)
  • Rep. Suzanne Bonamici (D-OR)
  • Rep. Kathleen Rice (D-NY)
  • Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-PA)
  • Rep. Gerald Connolly (D-VA)
  • Rep. Mark Takai (D-HI)
  • Rep. Andre Carson (D-IN)
  • Rep. Michael Simpson (R-ID)
  • Rep. Stephen Knight (R-CA)
  • Rep. Michael Fitzpatrick (R-PA)
  • Rep. Wm. Lacy Clay (D-MO)
  • Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO)
  • Rep. Tom Marino (R-PA)
  • Rep. Zoe Lofgren (D-CA)
  • Rep. Patrick Meehan (R-PA)
  • Rep. Alan Lowenthal (D-CA)
  • Rep. Ted Lieu (D-CA)
  • Rep. Tim Ryan (D-OH)
  • Rep. Austin Scott (R-GA)
  • Rep. David Reichert (R-WA)
  • Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-PA)
  • Rep. Suzan DelBene (D-WA)
  • Rep. Scott DesJarlais (R-TN)
  • Rep. Ryan Costello (R-PA)
  • Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-NC)
  • Rep. Susan Davis (D-CA)
  • Rep. Pete Aguilar (D-CA)
  • Sen. Christopher Murphy (D-CT)
  • Sen. Johnny Isakson (R-GA)
  • Sen. Joe Donnelly (D-IN)
  • Sen. Gary Peters (D-MI)
  • Sen. Edward Markey (D-MA)
  • Sen. John Barrasso (R-WY)
  • Sen. Jerry Moran (R-KS)
  • Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI)
  • Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH)
  • Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV)
  • Sen. Mike Rounds (R-SD)
  • Sen. Dean Heller (R-NV)