COVID Watch & COVID Pulse

Automated remote monitoring of COVID-19 patients isolating at home

Why remotely monitor COVID-19 patients?

For every COVID-19 patient requiring hospitalization, there are 25 or more patients who can safely shelter at home, but who might clinically worsen
or be worried about their symptoms.

COVID Watch and COVID Pulse support COVID-19 patients isolating
at home with daily check-ins and quick access to care.

Both programs are available in English and Spanish.

Support home isolation, prevent unnecessary exposure

COVID-19 patients should self-isolate unless they need care — typically for hypoxemia.

Brief, automated daily
check-ins with patients

Text twice daily with patients to see how they are feeling and provide reassurance.

Get patients the care they
need at the right time

Quickly identify patients who need medical attention and escalate their care to a provider or Emergency Department.


This program provides twice daily text-based check-ins to assess how patients are feeling and if they are having difficulty breathing.

Concerns are escalated to a clinician who calls the patient back within 1 hour.

Pregnancy Watch and Cancer COVID Watch are program adaptations available for special populations.


Patients are provided with a pulse oximeter to monitor their oxygen levels at home to supplement text-based check-ins.

If a patient’s oxygen saturation drops, they are escalated to a clinician.

Upon program completion, patients help other patients by returning their pulse oximeter in a pre-paid envelope. Pulse oximeters are sanitized for reuse.

Program Statistics


patients served since March 2020


min average escalation response time


average length in program


NPS score

By participating in COVID Watch, patient information and responses may be used for research purposes to evaluate the COVID Watch program and assess outcomes for patients with confirmed or suspected COVID-19. If you are a patient and would like your information removed from any potential research evaluating this program, please email Sheila Kelly at SKelly@pennmedicine.upenn.edu.

Patient Quotes

“Peace of mind”

The check-ins were very helpful for peace of mind which is extremely helpful when you have a brand new virus that even the best scientists and doctors don’t know much about yet. It’s a little unnerving to say the least. Especially for people who live alone I can see where this would be a godsend. Thank you.

“Professional and respectful”

I will just say that this Penn program is very professional and respectful, offering good advice. I really like the way they keep check on you and offering any assistance they can. Thank you Penn Medicine and may God bless you with much success.

“Very reassuring”

 It was very reassuring to know that once I was out of the hospital they were concerned about my progress and were checking on me to see how I was doing. Sometimes there may be setbacks and thankfully that didn’t happen to me; but if something did arise I could call a phone number and get the help I needed. I truly appreciated the program, which watched over me like a guardian angel!

Clinician Quotes

“Prevent delays in care”

The pandemic has resulted in a saturation of information, whether correct or misinformed, which can contribute to ones’ fear of seeking help. After speaking with one patient, she agreed to go the ED, where she was diagnosed with pneumonia. Having outreach, monitoring and extension of care through COVID Watch has helped prevent delays in care for patients.

“Alleviates congestion in ERs”

This program has been essential to ensure our patients get the level of care they need physically, mentally, and emotionally, while alleviating congestion in our local emergency rooms for our first responders.

“Helps patients use resources”

Some patients need reassurance that they are safe at home, while this program helps others to utilize virtual resources such as Penn Medicine on Demand (PMOD) for their needs. And others need encouragement to go to the emergency room for their safety after we assess the severity of their symptoms over the phone.

How does it work?

COVID Watch and COVID Pulse are currently available to
patients only through Penn Medicine.

The Team

COVID Watch and COVID Pulse are led by an operational team consisting of Penn Medicine clinical and innovation experts dedicated to providing consistent, high-quality patient care during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Anna U. Morgan, MD, MSc, MSHP
Medical Director, COVID Watch & COVID Pulse

Nancy Mannion, DNP, RN, CEN, FAEN
Interim Nurse Manager, COVID-19 RN Team

Ann Huffenberger, DBA, RN
Director, Penn Center for Connected Care

Krisda Chaiyachati, MD, MPH, MSHP
Medical Director, PennMedicine OnDemand

Susan McGinley MSN, CRNP
Manager, Penn Center for Connected Care & PMOD

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David Do, MD

Innovation & Informatics Lead, CHCI

Neda Khan
Applications Specialist, Way to Health

Christianne Sevinc
Product Manager,
Way to Health

Kathleen C. Lee, MD
Director of Clinical Implementation, CHCI

Doreen Lam
Project Manager (MS2)

Andrew Parambath
COVID Pulse QA (MS2)

David Asch, MD, MBA
Executive Director, Center for Health Care Innovation

Mohan Balachandran, MA, MS
COO, Way to Health