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About BHSF

About the company

BHSF Limited is a market-leading not-for-profit health insurer which can trace its history back to a charity which started in 1873, The Birmingham Hospital Saturday Fund, set up to help fund Birmingham hospitals.

BHSF was founded by an eminent Birmingham surgeon, Joseph Sampson Gamgee, who encouraged payroll contributions to support local hospitals (a practice which continued until the advent of the NHS in 1948) and the running of a convalescence service. The Company later developed into the provision of health cash plans and has since grown to be a significant health insurer.

BHSF is a 'not for profit' organisation limited by guarantee. The Company is run for the benefit of its policyholders and does not have shareholders. The Company has philanthropic roots and a proud history. Our video tells the story of BHSF.

Now, BHSF insures 375,000 people through 225,000 policies. Most of these help customers with their everyday health costs - that do not come free or easy on the NHS - such as optical, dental, therapies, health consultations and much more. Also, BHSF has brought its not-for-profit philosophy to the marketing of other health-related products and HR services including absence management, employee assistance programmes, personal accident insurance, annual travel insurance, Care4 life insurance and Plan4Life cancer insurance.

Three quarters of BHSF's business is transacted through employers who pay the premiums for their employees or alternatively offer payroll-deduction arrangements. Employees therefore enjoy corporate rates which are heavily discounted. The remaining policies are paid by direct debit.

BHSF's association with 30 client organisations can be traced back for 125 years or more - these include Mondal─ôz International (formerly Cadbury's), Birmingham City Council and West Midlands Police. More recently, major employers have wanted nationwide service to their sites in different parts of the country; BHSF has grown with this need and has a nationwide team dealing with sales and support. Its 3,000 client organisations include some of the UK's biggest names - like Argos, Sainsbury's, General Motors and Homebase - along with many hundreds of SMEs and smaller businesses.

Being a not-for-profit organisation means that more value can be ploughed back into products. Having no-one to serve but its customers is a very powerful message. The quality theme carries through to its service standards. For instance, 475,000 claims are paid each year, and we authorise payment of 90% of eligible claims within two working days of receipt. The training and support given to staff are reflected by its accreditations by IIP and ISO 9001:2008. Mike Tresham won the Future Face of Business title and the Company won the award for Excellence in Contributing to the Community, jointly with Arup, at the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce Awards in April 2013.

Best of Health

Best of health book

To mark its 130th anniversary, BHSF published a history of the company, 'Best of Health'.

If you wish to view the history of BHSF you can download the book here

Customer care

In the event of a complaint, you should write to us at the address on our contact page or telephone us on 0121 629 1297, quoting your policy number. If you are not satisfied with the way your complaint is dealt with you may refer it to the Financial Ombudsman Service, whose details will be provided in our response to you.

The Financial Ombudsman Service will only consider your complaint if you have first addressed the matter through our complaints process and received our response.