In his diary entries, Sir Patrick expressed frustration with the former prime minister, but he also acknowledged that this was not a unique issue for Mr Johnson. Many scientific advisers in other countries were facing similar challenges in explaining concepts to politicians. This difficulty was not unique to Mr Johnson, as it was affecting many other countries as well.
During his testimony to the inquiry, Sir Patrick mentioned that the prime minister had given up science at a young age and struggled with certain concepts. Mr Johnson even wondered if “we are licked as a species” before imposing another lockdown, according to diary entries from September 20, 2020. These entries provide insight into the challenges faced by scientific advisers in communicating complex ideas to politicians, and the difficulties leaders like Mr Johnson encountered in understanding such concepts.