Since the start of the pandemic, Territorians were told it was a question of when, not if, COVID-19 would spread into a remote Aboriginal community.
Early last week, the nightmare scenario finally materialised, when Robinson River became the first to face a COVID-19 outbreak.
Even before coronavirus, old and overcrowded housing was putting the roughly 350 residents in the Binjari and Rockhole communities at risk.
Just days earlier, Chief Minister Michael Gunner had released his government's updated plan for managing clusters among remote and vulnerable residents.
"The most important public health measure you can do if you get a COVID case in a remote community is to rush to that community with the vaccine," he said.
He based his rationale on modelling by the Doherty Institute that showed "vaccination surges" would significantly decrease the risk, particularly in places where the majority of residents were yet to be inoculated.
"If you get a COVID case in a remote community and you do a vaccination surge in that community, you will reduce — halve — the risk of hospitalisation in the community and, therefore, deaths."