To the roughly 90 per cent of eligible Kiwis who have gotten their first Covid-19 vaccination: Thank you.
To the 81 per cent who have had their second dose: Double thank you.
I am profoundly grateful to each and every one of you who have made the decision to protect yourselves, your families and your community from Covid.
The vaccine isn't perfect.
However, you are far less likely to transmit Covid while vaccinated. A study last month in the New Scientist found that vaccinated people infected with the Delta variant are 63 per cent less likely to infect people who are unvaccinated.
The lead scientist, Brechje de Gier at the National Institute for Public Health and the Environment in the Netherlands, says the full effect of vaccines on reducing transmission is even higher than 63 per cent, because most vaccinated people don't become infected in the first place.
So thank you, double-jabbed friends, for doing your best to avoid making the rest of us sick.
Studies show you're also about 10 times less likely to land in hospital and 10 times less likely to die from Covid than someone who's unvaccinated.
Thank you for doing your part to avoid our already bursting hospitals. Thank you for wanting to hang around the planet longer.
How did we get here? According to an American immunologist quoted last month in Healthline, we have years of concrete research, and "an appreciation of the last 150 years of vaccine study".
Thank you to the scientists who have dedicated their lives to public health.
Thank you, dear reader, for taking a crash course in science. For those of you who rely on reputable sources - doctors, researchers and scientists who respect peer review, consensus and the ever-evolving nature of their industry - thank you.
For anyone who has resisted passing along information on social media until you could verify its source, thank you.
The deadline passed earlier this week for healthcare workers and educators to get vaccinated.
Stories in the media and among our peers are emerging about a small minority of people abandoning their jobs because they fear the jab, are angry at the Government, have succumbed to misinformation or a combination of all three.
Yet the overwhelming majority of us - 90 per cent of eligible New Zealanders - have either gladly or reluctantly been vaccinated.
I want to relay my gratitude to all of you who have rolled up your sleeves and gotten on with it.
Thank you for continuing to teach, to heal and to provide care for some of our society's youngest, oldest and sickest people.
To the reported 96 per cent of Bay of Plenty District Health Board staff who are vaccinated, thank you.
To the 95 per cent of DHB staff nationwide who have had at least a first dose of vaccine (according to their unions), thank you.
I'm grateful for people who took their misgivings about vaccination to someone they trusted and listened to evidence. They learned new information, changed their minds and got immunised.
I'm grateful for everyone who is stepping back to contemplate a world that seems angrier than it used to be.
For not contributing to the vitriol, for pausing before speaking or writing. To everyone doing their best to separate public health from politics, thank you.
For everyone who is not gathering en masse without masks, thank you.
For anyone who is anti-vax yet recognises and avoids involvement with protest groups that have become platforms for conspiracy theorists, violent extremists, Trumpers, white nationalists and misogynists, thank you.
In this weird, uncertain time, we are all learning as we go.
We still have plenty to be thankful for. Frustration, heartache, disinformation and fear will always live among us.
Sometimes it's helpful to remember and recognise people who are quietly trying to do the right thing every single day.