BOSTON (SNHS) – Reflecting on the state of emergency that came to an end Tuesday, Gov. Charlie Baker praised the sacrifices Bay Staters made over the past 462 days and urged those who still have not done so to get vaccinated.

The state of emergency that Baker declared on March 10, 2020, officially lifted at 12:01 a.m. Tuesday, which the governor called “another turning point” in the fight against COVID-19.

“We’ve made it through the past 16 months because of the resiliency, kindness, creativity, imagination and commitment that the people of Massachusetts made to themselves and to one another,” Baker said. “You buckled down, you followed the public health guidance and the science, and you made tremendously difficult decisions and sacrifices to get us to this point.”

The virus’s impact on Massachusetts has lessened dramatically since the vaccine rollout began in December. New daily cases are down 99 percent from their January peak, Baker said, while hospitalizations are down 93 percent.

“The most important point I want to make today is how clear it is at this point based on the experience we’ve had here in the commonwealth and people have had in so many other places that the vaccines work,” Baker said. “They are our way to getting back to normal. It’s the best way to protect yourself, your loved ones, and your friends. It’s safe, it’s free and it’s easier to get than ever.”