Premier Peter Gutwein's announcement that the state border will reopen on December 15 strikes the right balance between taking a suitably cautious approach and providing Tasmanians with the certainty they need to start preparing for life after COVID.
As of earlier this week, more than 70 per cent of Tasmanians over the age of 15 have now been fully vaccinated, with that proportion projected to have passed 90 per cent before the border opening in less than eight weeks.
But the government has now drawn a line in the sand and as Mr Gutwein said: "We are not going to turn back from that date".
In addition to full vaccination being a requirement of entry from mid-December, those entering the state will also need to have evidence of a negative COVID test within the previous 72 hours.
State-specific Kirby Institute modelling has shown that Tasmania could expect to face average daily case numbers of 387 and more than 200 deaths under a "let it rip" approach. Mr Gutwein was quick to point out key public health measures would remain in place - including the requirement for masks in "high-risk" settings, outdoor events capped at 5000 and the ongoing use of the Check-In Tas app - but according to modelling this could still lead to a potential 87 deaths.
A combination of sensible public health policy and geographic isolation has kept Tasmania comparatively safe since the COVID-19 pandemic first emerged early last year.
But that isolation may have also led Tasmanians to become more complacent and one of the most important takeaways from Friday's press conference was that full vaccination will be the key to managing both the scale of potential outbreaks and the severity of symptoms for individuals who do contract COVID.
Health Department secretary Kathrine Morgan-Wicks said COVID would "become a pandemic of the unvaccinated".
Which is why, as Health Minister Jeremy Rockliff added, "vaccination is the number one protection Tasmanians have" against the virus. If you have yet to book in for a vaccination, time is ticking.