PennOpen Pass is a daily symptom tracker designed to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spreading within the Penn community. After a one-time enrollment process, users complete symptom checks before leaving their residence for the day. Users who report no symptoms and no recent contact with someone who may have COVID-19 get a Green Pass. Users who receive a Red Pass are directed to assistance and follow up tailored to their individual needs by a team of clinicians.
PennOpen Pass is part of Penn’s strategy to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spreading within the Penn community. The purpose of this program is to:
- Identify individuals whose health may be at risk or may pose health risks to others,
- Support those individuals to receive assistance, which may include COVID-19 testing, self-isolation, contact tracing, and medical care, and
- Monitor trends related to COVID-19 to enable timely allocation of resources for campus health and safety.
The following user groups are currently supported to use the tool:
- Faculty, postdoctoral trainees, students, and staff with PennKey or UPHS credentials
- Vendors and contractors with PennKey, UPHS credentials, or PennPath
Penn Medicine faculty and staff should not travel or gather with persons outside their immediate households. This significant sacrifice is necessary to reduce the risk of COVID-19 exposure for themselves, their families, coworkers, and our patients. To help us all manage the risks associated with potential exposure, every employee is required to attest honestly in PennOpen Pass to any symptoms or exposure. This will streamline access to Penn Medicine facilities via a Green Pass or access to necessary care. If you’ve made the choice to travel or gather with those outside of your household recently, PennOpen Pass provides the most up-to-date guidance for returning to work.
University faculty and staff who travel outside the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania are asked to be mindful of guidance from the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the City of Philadelphia. Although this guidance is fluid and changes frequently, the University requires members of the University community who are expected on campus to complete a 14-day precautionary travel quarantine, which is the gold standard of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. One cannot test out of travel quarantine at the University.
Faculty, postdoctoral trainees, staff, and students arriving on campus are required to complete daily symptom checks using PennOpen Pass. Symptom checks must be completed before leaving their residence for the day, including on weekends, to reduce the risk that any COVID-19 case could lead to an outbreak. Daily symptom tracking enables PennOpen Pass to act as an early warning system of potential COVID-19 infections on campus. If COVID-19 cases are diagnosed, clinical staff and contact tracers will respond quickly to contain spread and connect individuals at risk to care in an expedited manner. For persons working or learning remotely 100% of the time, PennOpen Pass still provides access to expedited clinical guidance should a need arise. For persons working or learning remotely less than 100% of the time, the expectation is to complete PennOpen Pass daily.
You should complete your symptom check before the start of your work or school day. If you are reporting to a University building or Penn Medicine facility, your symptom check must be completed before you depart for campus. This will give time for clinicians to respond to your needs and give you time to change your plans. If required, you must notify your supervisor or other points of contact about your symptoms or potential exposure.
Vendors or contractors are required to complete symptom checks using PennOpen Pass on the days they visit a University building or Penn Medicine facility. If you are a vendor or contractor who routinely reports to campus, either at the University or Penn Medicine, you should plan to use PennOpen Pass daily. Daily tracking is critical to reducing the potential spread of COVID-19 as it will enable your health care provider to act quickly if COVID-19 is detected.
You are not required to use PennOpen Pass if 1) you work for a company that uses a COVID-19 screening process approved by the University or Penn Medicine, and 2) you are not entering a University building or Penn Medicine facility.
Your Green Pass is valid through 3:59 a.m. every day. To generate a new pass, perform a symptom check after 4:00 a.m. by logging in at PennOpen Pass.
I am returning to campus after working or learning remotely 100% of the time. When should I start my daily symptom checks?
Individuals returning to campus after working or learning remotely 100% of the time should begin performing daily symptom checks using PennOpen Pass at least one week before their scheduled return to campus. It is most important to complete your daily symptom check on the day you are returning to campus before you arrive on campus.
I am going back to working or learning remotely 100% of the time after being on campus. For how long should I do daily symptom checks?
Individuals going back to working or learning remotely 100% of the time after being on campus should perform one week of daily symptom checks following their last day on campus.
Faculty and staff are expected to follow the Principles of Responsible Conduct in their use of PennOpen Pass. The Principles of Responsible Conduct articulate the basic expectations that should guide each of us in our work, and conduct of activities, for the University and Health System with the highest standards of integrity and ethics.
The Student Campus Compact outlines expectations for all Penn students regardless of where you are living during the 2020-2021 academic year. By enrolling as a student in 2020-2021, you agree to adhere to the expectations for physical distancing and other public behaviors, including daily symptom checks on PennOpen Pass.
The time spent using PennOpen Pass is not compensable work time for hourly paid staff under law.
How do I complete PennOpen Pass on days I cannot use electronic devices due to religious observance?
If you are on campus on a day when you cannot use electronic devices due to religious observance, please use the verbal attestation lane at building entrances. If you are not coming to campus, please monitor yourself for symptoms and potential exposure. If you receive a Red Pass or experience symptoms or potential exposure, contact the PennOpen Pass Call Center at 215-573-6355 or call Student Health Service at 215-746-3535 to seek guidance on next steps.
How do I report a Health System entity-specific concern of the use of PennOpen Pass? (For example, someone who purposely clears their Red Pass and goes to work after being instructed to quarantine by Red Pass Management)
Please use Safety Net.
- Go to Penn Medicine Safety Net
- Log into Safety Net
- Choose the Employee/Affiliate/Visitor Safety icon
- Indicate “Yes” on the question of COVID19 related
- Under free text section of Describe the Event add #openpass. The #hashtag will provide aggregate reports on PennOpen Pass.
How do faculty, staff, and postdocs report a health or safety concern about the use of PennOpen Pass?
Please contact Penn’s Reporting and Help Line, 215-P-COMPLY.
- Call 215-726-6759, or
- Make an online report at https://www.upenn.edu/215pcomply
Users who report no symptoms and no recent contact with someone who may have COVID-19 get a Green Pass. This means you are “cleared” for the day. Individuals reporting to campus will be expected to show their Green Pass on entry into buildings, wear a face covering, and practice physical distancing.
Users who do report symptoms or recent contact with someone who may have COVID-19 get a Red Pass. This means you are “not cleared” for the day. Users who receive a Red Pass will be asked to answer additional questions which allow follow up to be tailored to their individual needs. It is important to read the instructions provided on your Red Pass carefully and follow them right away. Our goal is to get things back to normal quickly, for you and the Penn community.
- Self-isolate at home and do not go to work/class in-person.
- Stay home, wear a face covering, and avoid contact with others - including those you live with.
- Contact your manager or Campus Health (if you are a student) to let them know about your absence from work or class.
- Seek care and advice from one of the following clinical team(s): Occupational Medicine, your primary care provider, or Campus Health. If you would like to speak to a Penn Medicine clinician to discuss your situation, please schedule a call using this link: https://pennmedicine.org/on-rn.
If you do not get a Green Pass as a result of a genuine mistake, you can retake the symptom check at PennOpen Pass by simply re-clicking the original link to correct your answer. When you submit your answers, you certify that the information is true and correct to the best of your knowledge.
I am a University student, faculty, postdoc, or staff member participating in the Penn Cares spring semester testing program. Why did I receive a Red Pass even if I answered all of the questions “No”?
University community members who are participating in the Penn Cares spring semester program may get an automatic Red Pass for two reasons:
- You have a Red Pass because you did not schedule your test for one week and your COVID-19 status is unknown. Schedule your next test as soon as possible to be in compliance with the program. Your Red Pass will clear within 24 hours after scheduling your next test.
- Your recent test returned a positive result.
For more information, visit the Penn COVID-19 Response website.
No, you will not be prevented from getting back into your own College House/Sansom if you do not have a Green Pass. Please be sure to follow the instructions in PennOpen Pass, but your College House is where we want you to go to stay safe if you need to quarantine. Security and building managers at all dorms have been trained on PennOpen Pass, and there will be someone on-site at all dorms 24/7 to make sure you get back into your dorm safely.
Do not come to work or class in-person if you are sick or feel unwell, even if you have a Green Pass. Contact your health care provider for guidance. PennOpen Pass is a screening tool to help identify people who need COVID-19 testing or quarantine advice to reduce the risk of an outbreak. It does not screen you for other illnesses. If you have other symptoms you may be contagious with something else.
Healthcare personnel and Red Pass holders may access these resources for testing. If you need additional assistance, call the PennOpen Pass Call Center 215-573-6355.
When you go for testing:
- wear a face covering
- practice physical distancing
Faculty, staff, postdoctoral trainees, and students who are tested outside of PennOpen Pass and Penn Medicine will receive subsequent instructions on how to provide the test result electronically to PennOpen Pass. After the test results are communicated, someone from Occupational Medicine or Campus Health will be in touch to determine next steps.
Do not go to work or class while waiting for your test results.
- It is important that you stay home and avoid contact with others, including the people you live with.
- If you must leave your home, wear a face covering and practice physical distancing.
- Faculty and staff should inform their manager/department chair if they need to be out of work for more than one day due to a delay in obtaining their test results or being told to be out of work by PennOpen Pass.
For University employees, refer to the COVID-19 Sick Time and Leave Guidance. For UPHS employees, refer to the UPHS Human Resources COVID-19 Guidelines (you must be on the UPHS network or logged in via VPN to access this resource). If your supervisor has questions, please ask them to contact the PennOpen Pass Call Center at 215-573-6355.
Faculty and staff will receive guidance on what to do next from a Penn Medicine clinician and students will be contacted by Campus Health. Please share the detailed guidance with your supervisor so that they can support you as needed.
Contact tracing can help reduce the risk of COVID-19 spread. Student contact tracing will be handled by Campus Health. If you are a University employee, someone from Penn will contact you. If you are a UPHS employee, someone from Penn Medicine Infection Control and the Center for Public Health Initiatives (CPHI) will contact you.
If you test positive for COVID-19, Occupational Medicine (faculty/postdocs/staff) or Campus Health (students) will work with you to determine when you can return to work/class in-person. Your return date will depend on a number of factors. If you are ill otherwise and do not have COVID-19, your personal health care provider or Student Health Service will determine when you can return to work or class.
If you have symptoms or potential recent exposure, please contact your health care provider for guidance. When you are cleared by your provider, you can retake your symptom check on PennOpen Pass.
What is the cost of testing at Penn Medicine for University of Pennsylvania faculty and staff / UPHS staff?
Penn Medicine appreciates the challenging time we are all facing during this national emergency. The PennOpen Pass team does not want you to worry about how you will pay for a COVID test should you need one. If you have health insurance coverage, most health plans are waiving any patient responsibility in full. For those without healthcare insurance or eligibility for any government programs, Penn Medicine will not bill you for the COVID test. If you are a UPHS staff member, there is no cost to you if you are tested through the PennOpen Pass.
The Penn Student Insurance Plan (PSIP) covers COVID-19 testing. If you are directed to testing by PennOpen Pass due to symptoms or exposure, other U.S. insurance plans should cover the cost of the testing under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act. The Act requires U.S. health plans to fully pay for COVID-19 testing deemed “medically necessary.” Contact your health insurance company with questions. If you do not have insurance coverage for COVID-19 testing and are required to be tested by PennOpen Pass, the University will cover the cost of testing.
Campus Health (for students) or Occupational Medicine (for faculty/staff) will clear you for return by talking to you about your test results and symptoms. Do not return to work or class in-person until you are cleared. If you have a COVID-19 test done outside of Penn Medicine, please be ready to provide documentation of your test result to Campus Health or Occupational Medicine. You do not need to provide documentation of clearance to your manager, professor, or other supervisor. When you are cleared, you may start your PennOpen Pass daily screenings again. Please complete them as you were doing before.
Use the “Email” and “Text” buttons on the Green Pass to send the pass to yourself. This will allow you to quickly access your Green Pass when you arrive on campus or move between buildings. You can also print your pass or take a screenshot on your phone. Your Green Pass is issued to you because you completed your personal symptom check. It should not be shared with anyone whose intent is to bypass completing their own personal symptom check.
If you have PennKey, UPHS credentials, or PennPath, you can complete your daily symptom check on a computer on the PennOpen Pass website and print your Green Pass. If you do not have access to a computer or printer, follow the check-in process at your building for people without PennOpen Pass.
Penn faculty, staff, and students living outside the United States can access PennOpen Pass using the University’s VPN client. See the VPN Getting Started Guide for instructions.
Yes. In addition to displaying a valid institutional identification card, all Penn Transit riders will be required to display a Green Pass in a manner consistent with the current protocols for building entry on campus. Individuals who do not have access to the PennOpen Pass program must either display their respective institution’s valid COVID screening pass or participate in driver-conducted screening and offer their verbal attestation. Individuals who respond “Yes” to any of the attestation criteria will not be allowed to ride in the vehicle.
The QR Code is a convenient alternative to entering the PennOpen Pass website address in your smartphone’s browser. You must have a QR Code reader installed on your smartphone. Open the QR Code reader on your phone. Hold your device over the QR Code displayed on PennOpen Pass signage so that the code is clearly visible within your smartphone’s screen. Follow the steps of your QR Code reader to get access to the PennOpen Pass website.
You can sign-up for a daily text reminder and set your reminder time in your PennOpen Pass profile.
Log-in to PennOpen Pass and edit your profile to change your reminder time.
If you do not want to receive text reminders, text back STOP. You will still need to complete PennOpen Pass daily. You have the option to complete it via the website. Bookmark the link for easy access. Text back START at any time to begin receiving texts again from PennOpen Pass.
We are committed to protecting the privacy and security of your data. See the PennOpen Pass Privacy Statement for more information.
PennOpen Pass was developed by the Penn Medicine Information Services software development team.
You do not need to install PennOpen Pass on your phone. PennOpen Pass is a mobile friendly website that runs in your phone or computer’s web browser, just like any other website that you would visit.
PennOpen Pass does not access the personal data on your phone. The application only stores information related to your completion of each day’s symptom survey. This data is stored securely.
Penn will retain personally identifiable information collected through PennOpen only as long as necessary to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, after which time it will be securely deleted.
How should I enter my symptoms in PennOpen Pass in the first 48 hours after receiving my COVID-19 vaccine?
As frontline workers begin receiving vaccinations, PennOpen Pass will remain an important tool. In the coming days and weeks, please pause, read, and respond to survey questions carefully. Do not report symptoms of unusual fatigue, fevers, or chills if you received a COVID vaccine within the past 48 hours. If you have other symptoms or these symptoms persist beyond 48 hours, report as usual. After 48 hours, PennOpen Pass will help distinguish between symptoms related to the vaccine and those which require other clinical guidance.