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Jeremy Olson

Reporter | Newsroom

Jeremy Olson is a Pulitzer Prize-winning reporter covering health care for the Star Tribune. Trained in investigative and computer-assisted reporting, Olson has covered politics, social services, and family issues.

A University of St. Thomas graduate, Olson completed fellowships at the Kaiser Family Foundation, Poynter Institute and New York Times. Honors include a Premack Public Affairs award for scrutinizing a schizophrenia drug trial, a SABEW award for uncovering abuses of meatpackers, and a Casey Medal for examining deaths in foster care. His Pulitzer-winning series on child care led to a decline in child deaths. Olson and his family live in Edina.
Recent content from Jeremy Olson
Veteran Wesley Farwell used the robotic device with the help of physical therapist Crystal Stien on May 22, at a ceremony to celebrate the donation.

Paralyzed Minnesota veterans walk with help from robotic exoskeleton

The SoldierStrong donation increases physical therapy capacity and exercise options at Minneapolis VA Medical Center.
D’Andre Sanvig’s body was found more than a month after the hiker fell into the fast-moving spring current of the St. Croix River.

Missing teen's body found in St. Croix River

"Part of me did hope that this wasn't real, but I also knew that it was," his mother said.
Keaton Peck was treated for a severe pediatric cancer earlier this winter, but now his parents are fighting with his doctors and child welfare officia

Parents fight Minnesota child protection in court after refusing chemo for 5-year-old boy

The Texas couple decry side effects of treatments to prevent relapse, but doctors say Keaton Peck could die if cancer returns.
Activists with the Minnesota Nurses Association camped out Friday near Gov. Tim Walz’s office at the State Capitol.

Final-hour deal removes nurse staffing rules from legislation

The legislation will instead focus on preventing violence against nurses and studying the reasons why they burn out.
María Isa Pérez-Vega, DFL-St. Paul, spoke in support of the Health and Human Services finance bill on the House floor on Monday, May 22.

Budget that expands Minnesota health care, abortion access, heads to governor

Democrats celebrate gains in health, child care and shelter programs, but Republicans criticize last-minute deals with no public testimony.
Activists with the Minnesota Nurses Association camped out Friday near the office of Gov. Tim Walz at the State Capitol in St. Paul.

Minnesota lawmakers unveil compromise health budget, delay on MinnesotaCare expansion

Mayo Clinic victorious in raising objects to health care affordability board, nurse staffing committees.
Licensure delays by the Minnesota Board of Nursing have contributed to nursing shortages, which have left emergency rooms at St. John’s Hospital in

Minnesota Board of Nursing director resigns just as board meets to decide her future

Kimberly Miller's decision preempts board discussion about whether to terminate her amid complaints.
Sen. Erin Murphy and Rep. Sandra Feist discuss edchanges to their hospital staffing bill before Thursday’s conference committee meeting at the State

Minnesota hospital nurse staffing bill amended to exempt Mayo

Threat to move billion-dollar expansion project to another state pays off for the Rochester-based health system.
Licensure delays by the Minnesota Board of Nursing have contributed to nursing shortages, which have left emergency rooms at St. John’s Hospital in

Minn. nursing board considers firing executive director after licensing, discipline delays

The board is meeting Thursday after complaints about Kimberly Miller, who assumed the post in 2021.
Mayo Clinic’s Gonda Building in downtown Rochester.

Lawmakers pulling together exemption for Mayo Clinic in Minnesota nurse staffing bill

Other hospitals cry foul over special treatment while they get hit with costly new regulations.
Resiliency coach Kerry Appleton, right, worked with Aurelia Alvarado, a pediatric nurse, during a session Thursday at North Memorial Health in Robbins

This nurse quit because of the stress. Now she helps others stay on the job.

Health system lauded for paying workers to seek out support from resiliency coach to address rising stress, burnout.
Prof. Karen Ashe is hoping that a reverification of her landmark Alzheimer’s disease research at the University of Minnesota will rebuild her reputa

U researcher seeks to put tarnished Alzheimer's discoveries back on track

Redo of landmark 2006 study is first step while U continues investigation of image manipulation.
Cass Crawford, 16, and his mother, Heather Crawford, moved to Minnesota from Texas last year because of the worsening political climate for trans chil

'It got very bad, very quickly': Families with transgender kids seek refuge in Minnesota

Advocates report more contact from families in other states that have banned or restricted gender-affirming care.
The Mayo Clinic Gonda building in Rochester.

Mayo threatens to pull back on Minnesota projects if health reforms advance

The warning to Gov. Tim Walz is a last-ditch move to stall health care reforms that have already passed in the House and Senate.
The latest Minnesota Department of Health COVID-19 analysis showed that seniors who had received bivalent boosters had lower death rates than unvaccin

Twin Cities area COVID-19 levels plummet in wastewater data

The drop is a sign of progress as pandemic emergency declarations end.
Cocaine-related deaths are on the rise in the U.S., partly because users are receiving drugs tainted with fentanyl, a highly potent opioid, or more re

Minnesota studying nonfatal drug overdoses to prevent fatal ones

Link between drug overdoses and homelessness in northeast Minnesota provides a target for increased prevention efforts.
The audit, among other things, noted the Minnesota Department of Health’s inaccurate inventory of supplies, such as COVID-19 tests.

Audit finds flaws in Minnesota spending on COVID response

The report notes several instances where state agencies exceeded emergency authority or failed to properly document purchases.
Regions Hospital in St. Paul.

Regions Hospital readies rural nurses to help sexual assault victims

Residency program offers training on how to conduct interviews and cope with the stress of their work.
Syphilis cases increased 25% in Minnesota last year, primarily among men who have sex with men in the Twin Cities and Duluth, but also in pregnant wom

Syphilis cases rose 25% last year in Minnesota

Pandemic might have suppressed screenings for sexually transmitted diseases in 2022, but syphilis cases rose 25% in Minnesota last year.
Former Minnesota Govs. Tim Pawlenty and Mark Dayton waited before testifying to a Senate committee in March regarding their concerns over a Fairview-S

Attorney general proposed as gatekeeper of Minnesota health care mergers

Legislation empowers Minnesota's lawyer to evaluate whether mergers are good for the state, not just whether they meet charitable, business laws.
Spending targets set by a state affordability board could create challenges for Mayo Clinic, which draws patients with complex, costly illnesses from

Minnesota lawmakers weigh fines, oversight of expensive medical providers

Correction plans and penalties would try to slow spending that translates into higher insurance premiums and copays.
A forum hosted by the University of Minnesota on Thursday included discussion of better vaccine development for COVID-19 and other pandemics.

Minnesota leads charge for better vaccines against pandemics, COVID-19

Road map sets target dates for improvements in vaccine development and global distribution during another pandemic or COVID-19 surge.
The TikTok app logo.

U study: TikTok can be 'runaway train' of distress for people with mental illness

Social media app provides useful community, but also a runaway train of hit-and-miss content on mental health.
Brigette Kerber played with her daughters, Ada, 4, left, and Elsie, 2, outside in Edina, Minn., on Friday, April 14, 2023. Both girls were conceived t

Minnesota experiencing an IVF baby boom even as overall births decline

The pandemic didn't slow infertility treatments in Minnesota.
Nurses worked Nov. 3 in an overcrowded emergency department at St. John’s Hospital in Maplewood. Several patients were treated in the hallways while

Minnesota hospitals want some COVID pandemic response rules to become permanent

The federal public health emergency declaration expiring in May allowed broad use of telemedicine and offered more flexibility around patient transfers.
Former Minnesota Department of Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm will speak at the University of St. Thomas next week.

Jan Malcolm: COVID exploited 'every single gap' in state's health, medical care

Former health commissioner's address next week to focus on weaknesses that predisposed Minnesota to pandemic struggles.
Rachel Hanemann cut her hours to part-time as a hospital nurse so she could maximize time with her children, but she would consider more shifts under

Will hospital staffing legislation solve Minnesota's nursing shortage, or make it worse?

State-mandated committees to set nurse staffing levels in hospitals might be politically palatable, but research questions their effectiveness.
Federal officials may announce another round of COVID-19 booster shots for seniors and others with elevated risks later this month.

Minnesota data upholds COVID-19 vaccine benefits ahead of federal booster decision

Hospitalization and death rates remain lower among Minnesota's seniors who received COVID-19 booster shots, even if they have waning immunity.
Patient care took place in the hallways of the St. John’s Hospital emergency room in Maplewood this winter because of overcrowding. A proposed 60-be

Texas company wants to build Minnesota's first stand-alone medical rehab hospital

Inpatient rehabilitation facilities are increasing across the U.S. as possible relief valves for general hospitals.
State epidemiologist Dr. Ruth Lynfield, shown in 2020, said a new long COVID guidance council will expand awareness to doctors and patients about trea

Minnesota organizes long COVID response as pandemic trends improve

Prevalence might be declining, according to federal survey data, but long COVID is still causing substantial and prolonged disabilities in Minnesotans.
The NFL and other pro sports leagues have called on Minnesota and other states to offer young athletes the same protections that saved Buffalo Bills p

NFL-led coalition calls for cardiac emergency plan for young Minnesota athletes

Pro league group recommended more defibrillators and CPR training for high school sports.
St. Cloud Hospital found at-home blood pressure monitoring helped women make choices about care during pregnancy.

Blood pressure monitoring at home helps Minnesota moms reduce birth complications

St. Cloud Hospital handed out free blood pressure cuffs to try to cut severe maternal morbidity by 25% in the state.
More people are using at-home tests for COVID-19 now, making wastewater measurements increasingly important as pandemic indicators.

COVID-19 levels decline sharply in Twin Cities wastewater

Hospitalizations and the number of patients requiring intensive care in Minnesota are also down.
Exterior of the Center for Disease Control (CDC) headquarters is seen in 2014 in Atlanta. A report Thursday from the CDC tallied autism rates in the T

Pandemic slowed diagnoses of autism in Minnesota

Despite diagnostic delays in 2020, the prevalence of autism increased to one in 34 8-year-olds in Minnesota, study shows.
Thomas Pahl, physician assistant at Glacial Ridge Health Systems, demonstrated the capability of  point-of-care ultrasound equipment for quick diagnos

$26.4 million grant helps Minnesota hospitals find life-threatening conditions

Emergency usage of ultrasound exams was pioneered at HCMC in Minneapolis, and will be expanded statewide through a Helmsley Charitable Trust grant.
Marjorie Bergman’s 36-year-old daughter, Michelle Marie Bergman Mattfield, died of COVID-19 in December.

After 3 years, COVID still brings death, heartbreak in Minn.

Risks have declined across age groups, but COVID-19 remains a particular threat to the elderly and chronically ill.
Ridership on Metro Transit hasn’t fully recovered since it collapsed in early 2020.

How the COVID-19 pandemic has changed Minnesotans' lives

The pandemic caused abrupt and unusual shifts at home, at work, shopping, traveling and more. Life isn't completely back to pre-pandemic normal — and maybe it never will be.
As of Thursday, Minnesota has reported almost 1.8 million lab-confirmed coronavirus infections.

Minnesota Department of Health launches surveys to assess impact of long COVID

The state continues to see relatively low but lingering levels of COVID-19.
Mayo researchers said isolation contributed to the state’s malnutrition deaths in the first year of the pandemic.

Hunger stalked elderly as Minnesota malnutrition deaths rose during pandemic

The increase was an unexpected finding in the Mayo Clinic analysis of mortality trends in 2020. Mayo blames isolation, but says some lockdown fears never materialized.
Minnesota reported its first COVID-19 case three years ago this week. The latest wastewater numbers show coronavirus levels declining across the state

Minnesota wastewater data points to spring COVID-19 declines

Minnesota's first confirmed COVID-19 case was announced three years ago this week.
Hyperbaric technologist Macy Vosbeek gives Kenzie Riemenschneider, 2, a stuffed shark toy as she returns to the hyperbaric medicine department at HCMC

Quick thinking, new treatment at HCMC help save toddler's ear after dog bite

The 2-year-old is among the first in the world to receive hyperbaric therapy to help reattach part of a severed ear.
Legislation about hospital staffing in Minnesota has gained attention this year in response to worsening nursing shortages and patient care delays.

Minnesota hospital staffing bill advances amid care delays

Worsening staffing, safety problems in hospitals draw lawmaker concerns, but differences over solutions.
Former Minnesota Governors Tim Pawlenty and Mark Dayton wait before testifying before the State Senate HHS Committee to ask that the merger talks be s

Fairview offers to sell University of Minnesota hospital to state

Two former Minnesota governors, Democrat Mark Dayton and Republican Tim Pawlenty, testified at a Senate committee hearing Tuesday night against out-of-state control of the teaching hospital.
Andrea Kimlinger, a caregiver at Lake Minnetonka Shores assisted living facility, helped a resident, Jean, to breakfast in March.

'Moonshot' state program trained hundreds of CNAs. But more are needed

A Minnesota program to provide free training ended, at least temporarily, last month with 2,500 graduates over two rounds. Its impact on the job market is less clear.
Naima Ahmed received one of the last COVID-19 tests administered by nurse Sue Clarke at the state’s St. Paul Midway testing site before it shut down

Minnesota on downside of winter bump in COVID-19 deaths

This winter wasn't as severe as past years, but showed a short-term increase in COVID-19 deaths, mostly among seniors.
Researchers at a University of Minnesota ethics forum discussed ways to communicate future research to restore public confidence.

Researchers offer path to improve trust in science after pandemic struggles

Some messages about prevention measures such as masks and vaccines proved problematic later on.
A new Minnesota Department of Health database tracks homicides, suicides and other preventable violent deaths as well as what types of events and prob

Minn. data dashboard probes violent death causes, trends

The Health Department's database shows that random killings were fairly uncommon and 44% of homicide victims were Black.
Katie Craven visited her son, Jamie, who has been in neonatal intensive care for nearly a year at the University of Minnesota’s Masonic Children’s

Ready to be discharged, hospital patients have nowhere to go

Insufficient number of skilled nursing home facilities and at-home caregivers leads to overcrowded hospitals.
Yellow tape covers the door to an area where a man was shot in a St. Paul apartment building on Saturday. The area is next to a community room where o

Witnesses say man shot by St. Paul police was behaving erratically

Police say the man, shot and killed Saturday evening by an officer, was coming toward them with a knife.
Two teens die in high-speed car crash near St. Paul

Two teens die in high-speed car crash near St. Paul

The State Patrol said the teens, both from Wisconsin, were in a car that veered off Highway 61 on Friday night.
An apartment complex where a St. Paul police were involved in a shooting on Saturday, Feb. 11, 2023.

St. Paul police fatally shoot man, say he was threatening people with knife

The incident occurred around 5 p.m. after the man was asked to leave an event in a community room at a Western Avenue apartment complex.
Two faculty members embraced outside the front entrance Friday at St. Paul Harding High School, where a student was stabbed and killed.

Fatal student stabbing in Harding High roils St. Paul

Twin Cities leaders call for increased security and protection for students.
Suzanna Newell was helped to her feet by her husband Pedro Rojas at their St. Paul home. Newell suspects complications from COVID-19 vaccination cause

Minnesotans claiming COVID vaccine injuries are left in limbo

Backlog at federal program means waiting months or years to find out if people qualify for compensation to pay for medical care.
Take-home dust from workers at Federal Ammunition’s plant in Anoka is believed to be the source of elevated lead levels in four children.

Elevated lead levels found in kids of parents who work at Anoka ammunition plant

Discovery in four children prompted plans to screen more children of workers at Federal Ammunition.
Minnesota’s state COVID-19 testing site in the St. Paul Midway area had little activity on its final day in operation on Jan. 27.

Minnesota's third COVID winter much milder than 2021, 2022

Hospitals are reporting fewer cases of COVID in inpatient beds. But the coronavirus behind the pandemic is still circulating.
Leah Henrikson introduced her daughter, Vivian, the inspiration for Minnesota’s Vivian Act legislation in 2021 that spread awareness about congenita

Minnesota is first U.S. state to universally test newborns for CMV

The easily transmissible cytomegalovirus is a leading cause of infant hearing loss and congenital birth defects.
Much of the research so far on the medical effects of marijuana has focused on young people, leaving unanswered questions about adult usage.

As Minnesota considers legalizing marijuana, what does research say about the risks?

Medical groups urge lawmakers to raise age limit of legalization proposal from 21 to 25, based on research.
Naima Ahmed received one of the last COVID-19 tests administered by nurse Sue Clarke at the state’s St. Paul Midway testing site before it shut down

COVID-19 persists while flu declines in Minnesota

An early influenza wave ended early in Minnesota, despite the state's risk factors for a more severe season.
Nurses with the Minnesota Nurses Association joined with medical students from the University of Minnesota and other labor organizations on Monday to

Minnesota lawmakers weigh further review of Fairview-Sanford merger

At least three bills threaten to slow or block the merger, especially if it involves the University of Minnesota's teaching hospital.
A state testing center in Brooklyn Park, which also provided rapid access to antiviral therapies, is closing this weekend as Minnesota transitions mor

Severe COVID-19, flu cases decline, easing pressure on Minnesota hospitals

The state-run COVID-19 St. Paul testing site shuts down Friday, followed by closures this weekend in Duluth, Brooklyn Park and at MSP.
A nursing shortage has contributed to a backlog of patients, including at St. John’s Hospital in Maplewood, where treatment occurred in the emergenc

Licensing delays are worsening Minnesota's nurse shortage

Nursing school graduates have jobs lined up, but have to wait months to take required licensing exams.
Patients receiving primary care through Hennepin Healthcare generated lower total health care costs than the average Minnesota patients, according to

Medical spending in Minnesota rebounded in 2021

Suspension of non-urgent procedures and fear of COVID-19 reduced medical usage in 2020, but spending on delayed care surged in 2021.
The University of Minnesota settled a lawsuit in a the case of a doctor who used to work at its medical center.

University of Minnesota settles lawsuit in case of doctor acquitted of sexual assault

The doctor no longer works at the hospital, and his temporary license as a Minnesota medical resident has expired.
Sewage samples from facilities such as the St. Cloud Wastewater Treatment Plant are being used to detect COVID-19, but research at the University of M

Minnesota could search sewage for all viruses, not just COVID-19

University of Minnesota research emerges as national scientific group backs broader wastewater surveillance, points to ethical issues.
Dan Boyd received his second COVID-19 vaccine booster shot from nurse Joan Wynne in Bloomington this summer.

New variants show little impact so far on COVID trends in state

Neither COVID-19 nor flu numbers have surged in Minnesota after the holidays, defying seasonal patterns.
Nurse Julie O’Hara talked with actor Michael Terrell Brown, who was portraying a frustrated parent during a simulation using a baby doll on Tuesday,

Actors train Minnesota medical providers to avoid racial bias

Live-action simulation by Children's Minnesota seeks to remedy cause of poor health outcomes in minority patients.
Minnesota health officials are raising concerns about the pockets of children who aren’t vaccinated against measles, a highly infectious disease tha

Minnesota snuffed measles clusters in 2022, but risks remain

Declining MMR vaccination rates have created pockets in the state where the infectious disease can spread.
Most children in Minnesota are up to date on recommended pediatric vaccinations by kindergarten, but the state’s rates declined and were below natio

Pediatric vaccinations decline in Minnesota amid COVID-19, parent hesitancy

The decline is another impact of a pandemic that has now caused more than 14,000 COVID-19 deaths in Minnesota.
Joseph Rubash, 11, received his final infusion of Tzield, a new drug meant to delay the onset of Type 1 diabetes, and enjoyed a balloon bouquet with h

A new drug aims to delay diabetes, and child in Minnesota is among the first to try it

Screening can identify kids falling into Type 1 diabetes, and now there is a drug to do something about it.
A return to clinical care improved patient outcomes for high blood pressure and other conditions in 2021, but they remain below pre-pandemic levels, a

Clinical care improves, but still trails pre-COVID levels in Minnesota

Keeping in touch with patients is one of the keys to better outcomes, nonprofit survey finds.
The state of Minnesota is offering a final chance for people to order free at-home COVID-19 tests.

Minnesota offers last chance access to free COVID-19 tests

COVID-19 levels remain low in Minnesota, but coronavirus variants present concern and need for testing access.
Home care providers, who lobbied in 2012 to organize through SEIU Healthcare, have now reached a fifth contract with the state of Minnesota.

Minnesota could bump up some home care provider salaries by 31%

The contract, subject to final approval, would seek to stabilize that workforce at a time of growing need in the state.
The number of COVID-19 and influenza cases in Minnesota did not increase over the holiday week, easing some of the pressure on the state’s hospitals

No sign yet of holiday bump in COVID-19, flu levels in Minnesota

The XBB variant has become a dominant source of COVID-19 in other states, and could be a concern if it emerges in Minnesota.
Nick Nerburn got one of the final vaccines at the Mall of America community vaccination site in Bloomington on Friday.

COVID's hidden toll a 2023 challenge for Minnesota

Long COVID, chronic diseases and mental health concerns will all increase demand for medical services in post-pandemic era.
In November, patients were placed and seen in the hallways of the emergency department at M Health Fairview St. John’s Hospital in Maplewood.

Declining flu plus level COVID-19 equals temporary relief for Minnesota hospitals

Influenza trends point to early season, fueled by low vaccination rates and susceptibility after two mild seasons.