Context: study describing regional health service provision/offer/utilisation

This plot should describe how large proportion of these services are used by locals (residents of particular county).

enter image description here

How to name Y axis so that it would understandable to readers?

Proportion offered to locals/residents of this county/.....

Proportion used by locals

  • 1
    I apologize, but my firewall will not allow me to view the image. If the Y axis is expressed in percentages, why not "Percent used by locals"?
    – RobJarvis
    Oct 26, 2020 at 12:50
  • This is specialsed and not general English. I suggest you ask the question on the statistics SE, here stats.stackexchange.com - I say this because there are problems with your diagram (for example a lack of a scale on the Y-axis), plus other things that are not appropriate to discuss on English Language. Frankly, if these are really percentages, I think a pie-chart would be more suitable. Oct 26, 2020 at 14:20
  • 1
    @chasly-supportsMonica I submit that this is indeed a question about English. Many literate scientists would take issue with you over your assertion. The sight of a simple graph should not produce a negatively Pavlovian "Argh .... it's maths - nothing to do with me!" response. Those who use graphs use them to illustrate their thoughts. The English used to annotate and explain such images is no more argot and jargon than is much of the English used by those who express themselves in poetry, drama, marketing, music, business, politics, medicine and all other forms of creative expression.
    – Anton
    Oct 26, 2020 at 17:17
  • @Anton - That's not what I said at all. I have a degree in Mathematics and Computing. You have imagined my reaction. The Oct 26, 2020 at 17:44
  • @chasly-supportsMonica Your qualifications are as irrelevant as my own similar. I know that some people react adversely to graphs or trivial mathematics but I imagined none of your own reactions and apologise that I appeared to do so. I only disagree with your implication that the question does not deserve our attention.
    – Anton
    Oct 26, 2020 at 19:19

2 Answers 2


There is no need to mention proportion, because proportion is already explicit in the use of a percentage. An axis label of “Local usage of services” will suffice, or you may prefer “Residents’ use of local services”. Whatever you choose, do not forget to indicate the 100% position on the axis.


I think just something along the lines of "Health service usage rate" or even just "usage rate" should be sufficient. The graph axes labels don't have to be technically specific, since you should elaborate on the variables in the paper itself. Furthermore, the labels on the x-axis already imply that each statistic applies only to one country, so mentioning "locals/residents" in the y-axis would be redundant.

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