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1. The average patient numbers at Bangkok Hospitals this mouth was much higher . . .

2. The average number of patients at Bangkok Hospitals this mouth was much higher . . .

a. The average patient numbers using Bangkok Hospitals this mouth was much higher . . .

b. The average number of patients using Bangkok Hospitals this mouth was much higher . . .

Which are better, 1. or 2. and a. or b.?

1 Answer 1

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2 and B.

  • 1 is incorrect because the subject "patient numbers" (plural) disagrees with the verb "was" (singular). 2 is correct because the subject "number of patients" (singular) agrees with the verb (singular)

  • A is incorrect because (patient) numbers cannot "use" Bangkok hospitals. B is correct because a (number of) patients can "use" Bangkok hospitals.

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  • sorry I originally typed the ones that were incorrect (1 and A) but meant to type the ones that were correct (2 and B). I've corrected it
    – nmar
    Nov 4, 2018 at 6:33
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    So, "the/a number(s) of patients" is considered humans, but "patient number(s)" is considered figures, right?
    – hbtpoprock
    Nov 4, 2018 at 6:37
  • yes, that's correct
    – nmar
    Nov 4, 2018 at 6:40
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    @hbtpoprock Patients are people. And patients using hospitals are people. But numbers of anything, including patients who use hospitals, are figures. The sentence that's correct is parsed as average number [a figure] of (patients [people] using Bangkok hospitals). Nov 4, 2018 at 6:52
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    Ty @JasonBassford
    – hbtpoprock
    Nov 4, 2018 at 7:07

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