New York Times reports today that women will be able to purchase their breast pumps & other pumping supplies using flexible spending accounts, or deduct these expenses.
The hope is that more working moms will be able to benefit themselves & their babes by breastfeeding longer. The article notes that a pump & supplies usually cost $500-$1000 for the first year, a significant cost barrier for mothers who are returning to work.
This new tax break dovetails nicely with the new-ish healthcare reform requiring employers provide employees with time & space for pumping.
The language in the IRS letter issuing the new ruling is odd to say the least (as reported in the NYT, the IRS doesn’t mention the benefit to infants, instead explaining that it’s a medical expense because of the effects on the woman’s body). But the effect is a positive one nonetheless!