Complacency wasn't about to set in 12 months ago when our region was heading into some of the darkest days of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The virus had created a united community of concern, with almost everyone committed to doing their bit.
Those months were hard-graft, especially for families split and businesses severely knocked because of border closures.
The importance of what we all were trying to do came into sharp focus when the virus managed to escape from Victoria's hotel quarantine system.
Hundreds of people, mostly in aged care, succumbed to the illness, which was a tragedy that emphasised how easily we could be overrun.
Thankfully, that didn't happen again and by year's end the virus was all but eliminated.
The news that there was indeed a vaccination - in fact, several - on the horizon added to our growing confidence.
For all of Australia's success though, issues with the far slower-than-expected roll-out of the vaccination program has left us exposed.
Much of the criticism has been directed at the federal government, chiefly to do with it putting its eggs in too few baskets on vaccine choice.
The early results that suggested an albeit tiny percentage of blood-clotting cases occurring in people receiving the AstraZeneca vaccine developed by Oxford University threw everything way off-centre.
It was determined that those under-50 were at greater risk, so in turn we were left with the majority of those in that age bracket having to wait, possibly until later this year, for the now-preferred Pfizer vaccine.
That cannot be helped, but what can be helped is everyone now eligible for a vaccine making the effort to get out there and get their jab.
The case for doing so has been made even more worthy with the latest reports that suggest two shots of AstraZeneca could be up to 90 per cent effective.
As is now been demonstrated in some of those equally successful nations, such as South Korea and Singapore, once the virus gets in another wave can begin.
And if we don't at least get vaccinated, the consequences could be dire.