Public Health Guidance

Public health guidance on campus continues to evolve. The following are updates as of July 28, 2021:

Testing

  • Beginning July 1, faculty, staff, postdocs, and students must be fully vaccinated and upload their vaccine documentation or take part in Penn Cares screening testing.
  • Students who will be on campus for the Fall 2021 semester are required to undergo Gateway Testing. Some students may be unable to access the scheduling system until the week of August 9.

Quarantine after Travel
Anyone coming from outside the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania should be mindful of guidance from the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the City of Philadelphia. Traveling remains a risky activity for COVID-19. All travelers, even those who are fully vaccinated, should continue to wear a mask while traveling, distance when possible, and practice good hand hygiene.

Travel guidance is fluid and changes frequently.

Masking, Distancing, Washing

We are paying very close attention to the increase in COVID-19 cases and the spread of reported variants, and will continue to update our guidance based on the recommendations of the Philadelphia Department of Public Health. Our current guidance is:

  • Masks are strongly recommended for everyone while indoors, including those who are fully vaccinated. Those who are unvaccinated and/or have not uploaded their vaccine documentation are required to continue to mask while indoors. 
  • Additionally, masks are required if you are:
    • A student in quarantine or isolation living with other people, also known as congregate settings. You are required to wear a mask indoors in your residence.
    • Working with children under the age of 12, such as a school, camp, or childcare setting.
    • Inside healthcare settings, including all Penn Medicine facilities, Student Health and Counseling office buildings, and Penn Cares testing sites.
    • Using public transportation, including Penn Transit.
  • Restrictions on indoor eating have been lifted by the City. However, eating remains one of the higher risk activities for disease transmission, especially indoors. For those who are unvaccinated, continuing to practice social distancing while eating is strongly encouraged. Outdoor eating remains a preferable and safer option, but dining indoors is no longer prohibited.
  • Everyone must continue to be mindful of good hygiene habits, like washing hands and keeping surfaces clean.

PennOpen Pass

We encourage everyone to enroll in PennOpen Pass, our daily COVID-19 symptom and exposure tracker, which will be required to enter healthcare facilities, including the Penn Cares testing site. Those who are unvaccinated must use PennOpen Pass daily to reduce the risk of COVID-19 spreading within the community. 


Public health guidance at the University may differ from what has been advised at the state and federal level. Guidance may change depending on COVID-19 trends and positivity rates on campus and within the University's surrounding communities.

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