Slightly before 9 AM, Korea time, on Friday a 61-year-old care worker unofficially became the first person vaccinated against COVID-19 in South Korea.
And from then on, shots were given to hundreds of people across the nation.
For her, and many others, the vaccine was a dose of relief as much as anything else.
Kim Sung-min reports.
"What is your name?"
"It's Lee Kyeong-soon."
It was 8:45 AM on February 26th.
The very first shot in South Korea's vaccine program, going into 61-year-old Lee Kyeong-soon's arm.
Lee, a care worker from the Sanggye nursing home became the country's unofficial first recipient, as the center started its vaccinations a little bit earlier than the 9 AM nationwide start time.
"Frankly speaking, it's been a very nerve-wracking year. But now that I've been vaccinated, I feel relieved and I thank the government, the district office and the health center for their efforts to make this happen."
And soon after the clock hit 9 AM,hundreds of shots were given all across the country.
The first in line were the residents and workers of nursing and rehabilitation centers under the age of 65.
More than 289-thousand people signed up, almost 94 percent of those who were eligible for the first round.
At least 5,200 inoculations were given on the first day.
And for many, it was a dose of relief.
"I was concerned because there were people saying that the effectiveness in preventing the virus differs by vaccine type, but I am feeling comfortable now."
"Starting today, I hope that we start to get herd immunity so that our patients can see their families and that everyone can return to their daily lives without masks."
From Seoul to Busan to Jeju, the country successfully finished its momentous first day of vaccines.
Up next is Pfizer's vaccine which will be rolled out from Saturday.
It has a sign-up rate of 95.8 percent, slightly higher than AstraZeneca's.
Starting from the 27th, the progress of the vaccination program will be provided by the government via the KDCA's official website.
Kim Sung-min, Arirang News