MARTINEZ (KPIX) – A dose of hope is spreading throughout the Bay Area as the first vaccinations take place from San Francisco to Martinez.

According to Contra Costa Health, more than 9000 doses of the Pfizer vaccine have been sent to the Regional Medical Center. It’s a small number but the hope is with each dose, the Bay Area can finally contain the coronavirus.

“This is one step closer to a normal world,” said Dr. Sergio Urcuyo, who was the first in Contra Costa County to get the vaccine. Now he has taken the first step to protect those that he loves the most.

“What I always worry about is I have a wife and kid back home and I always worry about them,” said Dr. Urcuyo.

This was the day all frontline workers have been waiting for nearly 11 months. Dr. Antonio Gomez at San Francisco General Hospital earned the distinction of being the first one in the Bay Area to get the vaccine. He treats some of the sickest COVID-19 patients at the hospital.

“There is hope now outside of social distancing and mask wearing. There is another way to get control of the outbreak,” said Dr. Gomez.

All of those who received the vaccine Tuesday will have to follow up with a second dose in about a month. The Pfizer vaccine has been found to be 95% effective and safe in clinical trials approved by the Food and Drug Administration.

Contra Costa Health says the vaccine won’t be available to the general public until the middle of next year but this is a sign of progress many were wishing for.

“This marks the end of the pandemic in many ways because widespread vaccination is what will allow people to get back to their normal lives,” said Urcuyo. “We still have a lot to learn. We don’t know if this will be a permanent thing or not and we do know this is affected for a period of time and will make a difference.”

Contra Costa County is expected to get 22,000 more doses of the Pfizer vaccine next week. The first priority will be the frontline workers and those in nursing homes.