Penn Open Pass

PennOpen Pass, a daily symptom tracker, helps to reduce the risk of COVID-19 to the Penn community, throughout both the Health System and University. It is required for anyone engaged with on-campus academic, research, or clinical activities.

Performing a daily symptom check — before arriving at work — is key. Anyone with no new symptoms and no recent contact with a known COVID-19 case receives a “Green Pass,” which must be shown to enter buildings on campus. Those who report recent exposures to known cases or who themselves have new COVID-19-specific symptoms or a combination of nonspecific potentially COVID-related symptoms receive a “Red Pass,” along with appropriate advice on next steps.

“PennOpen Pass helps assure you are safe to be on campus, provides you with Penn Medicine clinical expertise to help facilitate the steps to take if you have symptoms or exposure, and monitors trends related to COVID-19 to enable timely allocation of resources for campus safety,” said PJ Brennan, MD, the Health System’s chief medical officer. “This is the entry point and is part of a set of practices that are done together: facial covering, social distancing, and good hand hygiene.”

The design of the PennOpen Pass program incorporates currently known clinical information about the epidemiology of COVID-19. It strikes a balance between identifying possible cases and triggering false positives. “When we identify potential cases, expedite self-isolation, testing, and contact tracing, we intercede and prevent single cases from seeding outbreaks,” said Kevin Volpp, MD, PhD, director of the Penn Center for Health Incentives and Behavioral Economics.

So far, more than 30,000 Health System faculty, staff, and students have enrolled in the program.

Learn more about PennOpen Pass at

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