Some people were rather apprehensive about the introduction of a 24 hour health line. They thought it was a cop out and would lower our standard of health care.Health Direct has been bloomin' brilliant in my observation and I cannot thank them enough of the level of care they have provided for 2 of my family members who both have considerable medication requirements and long term health issues. They both use the service because I initially prompted them to try it. The service does several things .It provides complete reassurance. Both of these family members need that because if things go wrong it can have serious consequences. Managing those sorts of illnesses are possible but people tend to become anxious and so the first thing they need and get with Health Direct is reassurance and a settling approach. Whoever is at the end of the line inspires confidence and trust very quickly. The second thing they get from Health Direct is a competent, calm, organised appraisal of the situation. From that point it is then a filtering service and the person directs them to the appropriate help. It means our services are better used and accessed. One family member is concerned about over utilising services when others might need them. The other one doesn't think about that. In both situations they are directed to the right medical service and if an ambulance has to be called then there are good grounds for it and the ambulance people don't feel they have been called out for nothing. In both cases the people have received good advice and a sound approach. It has also meant when things have been very serious they have been managed in an incredibly effective manner.We all have things wrong with us from time to time and so it's good to have a service which keeps us calm and practical and points us in the right direction. In this way we are better catered to as a nation. Good health is important to keep us all happy and productive!