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# Two ways to SUM a complex expression

## From the given table I want to derive the count for OOS as a separate field (CntOOS) that gives me the number of times 'OOS' appeared in the above three visits.

I have a table like follows:

```------- Existing fields -------| Derive
client  Visit1  Visit2  Visit3 | CntOOS
---------------------------------------
A         OOS    OOS     RTN   |    2
B         RTN    OOS     D&D   |    1
C                RTN           |    0
D         RTN    OOS     D&D   |    1```

From the given table I want to derive the count for OOS as a separate field (CntOOS) that gives me the number of times 'OOS' appeared in the above three visits.

You can do this easily with CASE expressions:

```select client
, case when Visit1 = 'OOS'
then 1 else 0 end
+ case when Visit2 = 'OOS'
then 1 else 0 end
+ case when Visit3 = 'OOS'
then 1 else 0 end   as CntOOS
from yourtable```

You did not ask this, but if you need a total of CntOOS for all clients, there are two ways to do it. The first is to wrap the SUM function around the complex CntOOS expression:

```select sum(
, case when Visit1 = 'OOS'
then 1 else 0 end
+ case when Visit2 = 'OOS'
then 1 else 0 end
+ case when Visit3 = 'OOS'
then 1 else 0 end
) as sum_CntOOS
from yourtable```

The second way is to wrap another query around your original query:

```select sum(CntOOS) as sum_CntOOS
from (
select client
, case when Visit1 = 'OOS'
then 1 else 0 end
+ case when Visit2 = 'OOS'
then 1 else 0 end
+ case when Visit3 = 'OOS'
then 1 else 0 end   as CntOOS
from yourtable
) as details```

Sometimes it's good to have alternative ways of doing something in SQL. The second method utilizes a derived table, also known as an inline view.

This was last published in August 2006

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