All hands on deck

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Oswinw011

Senior Member
Chinese
When a crisis calls for all hands on deck, the pediatrician feels duty bound to help those patients who are suffering from the epidemic in Wuhan.

hi, everyone
I wrote a sentence by myself, and I wondered if all hands on deck was used correctly. Are there any mistakes? Thanks
 
  • lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Presumably the point you want to make is that in this sort of emergency all doctors have to step in to help, irrespective of their medical specialty (e.g. a paediatrician must be prepared to treat adults as well as children).

    But the sentence doesn’t really get that message across. “All hands on deck” conveys the need for help from as many medics as possible, but the rest of the sentence just begs the question, why are you specifically mentioning a pediatrician?
     

    Myridon

    Senior Member
    English - US
    It says when there is any sort of major crisis (a volcano erupts in Beijing), pediatricians go to Wuhan. :eek:
     

    Oswinw011

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Presumably the point you want to make is that in this sort of emergency all doctors have to step in to help, irrespective of their medical specialty (e.g. a paediatrician must be prepared to treat adults as well as children).

    But the sentence doesn’t really get that message across. “All hands on deck” conveys the need for help from as many medics as possible, but the rest of the sentence just begs the question, why are you specifically mentioning a pediatrician?
    Because I wanted to say, the current situation of a SARS-like epidemic is so urgent that even a pediatrician needed to go to the designated hospital and helped save the life of the patients who contracted the novel coronavirus disease.
     

    Oswinw011

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    It says when there is any sort of major crisis (a volcano erupts in Beijing), pediatricians go to Wuhan. :eek:
    As the crisis called for all hands on deck, even the pediatrician felt duty bound to help those patients who were suffering from the epidemic in Wuhan. How about this one, is it awkward?
     

    lingobingo

    Senior Member
    English - England
    Because I wanted to say, the current situation of a SARS-like epidemic is so urgent that even a pediatrician needed to go to the designated hospital and helped save the life of the patients who contracted the novel coronavirus disease.
    That’s a much better explanation than your original version. But I now think that, by saying “the paediatrician”, you might be referring back to a particular paediatrician previously mentioned and so already known to the reader? If so, you have to explain that all-important context. It’s not obvious from anything you’ve said.
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    Wuhan comes far too late in the sentence.

    As the crisis in Wuhan calls for all hands on deck...
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    The etymology of the phrase gives additional meaning to "all hands on deck". It was not originally a call for everyone to come to work together (though it is used that way nowadays), rather it was a call for all the deck hands (workers on a ship) to come to the deck to await instructions from the captain.

    all hands on deck

    all hands on deck
    1. A call for all members of a ship's crew to come to the deck, usually in a time of crisis. (A "hand" is a member of a ship's crew.) We're under attack! All hands on deck!
    2. By extension, everyone available to help with a problem, or a call for those people to help.


    Alternative phrases that might work also are (I am sure there are many others):

    • All possible assistance
    • All the help we can get
    To use these alternative phrases small changes in the structure of the sentence are required.

    With the need for all possible assistance, the pediatrician feels duty bound to help those patients, even adults, who are suffering from the epidemic in Wuhan.

    With the Chinese people requiring all the help they can get, even pediatricians feel duty bound to help those patients, even adults, who are suffering from the epidemic in Wuhan.



    [Crossed posts with Kentix. I am recasting these sentences with "Wuhan" moved up in the sentence. I do not think it improves on the grammar, but it does improve on the effort to communicate.]

    With the residents of Wuhan needing all possible assistance, even pediatricians feel duty bound to help those patients, even adults, who are suffering from the epidemic.

    With the residents of Wuhan requiring all the help they can get, even pediatricians feel duty bound to help those patients, even adults, who are suffering from the epidemic.
     
    Last edited:

    Oswinw011

    Senior Member
    Chinese
    Thank you all for your help. Just one simple sentence needs so much sophisticated consideration.
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    [Crossed posts with Kentix. I am recasting these sentences with "Wuhan" moved up in the sentence. I do not think it improves on the grammar, but it does improve on the effort to communicate.]
    Exactly.
     
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