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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
Kirk Randall, a nurse with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota, filled a syringe with a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine last month at a vacci

Outbreak at S.D. wrestling meet worries Minn. health officials

Lack of mask-wearing and social distancing adds to concerns of event in South Dakota fueling viral spread in Minnesota.
Registered nurse Sherry Donnahoo filled syringes with the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine to be used at the vaccination site at the Masjid Al Tawba

Minnesota COVID-19 hospitalizations double in three weeks to 651

More than half of population in Hennepin County has received COVID-19 vaccine, statewide rate rises to 47%.
Paramedic Kayse Abdirahman checked Milgo Ahmed’s temperature before administering the vaccine last Friday.

COVID-19 forecasts split on Minnesota's pandemic future

More infectious variants believed to be causing half of all new COVID-19 cases in Minnesota right now.
Matt Brenner, a temporary nurse with the Minneapolis VA, administered a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine to Pamela George, 34, of Rogers,

Minnesota prepares for any dropoff in COVID vaccine demand

Officials ready to boost outreach if interest flags.
Ex-Gov. Tim Pawlenty, above left, and Gov. Tim Walz received the J&J vaccine last week at the Vikings’ practice facility in Eagan.

Virus cases press Minnesota hospital capacity once again

COVID-19 hospitalizations rose above 500 in Minnesota for the first time since late January.
In a screened off room in the Brian Coyle Center in Cedar-Riverside neighborhood, Paramedic Kayse Abdirahman checked her temperature before administer

COVID-19 vaccine options emerging to address inequity in Minnesota

State nearing rollout out of retrofitted Metro buses as mobile vaccine clinics to visit high-need areas.
Registered nurse Alexandria Kilby hooked up the monoclonal antibody infusion to Donna Hipsher in St. Luke’s Emergency Department in Duluth earlier t

2,553 Minnesota virus cases are highest single-day count since Jan. 4

Health officials are promoting antibody therapies to help prevent hospitalizations amid rising pandemic activity in Minnesota.
Former Minnesota Vikings linebacker  E.J. Henderson received the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine Tuesday, at the Vikings practice facility in Ea

Variants make Minnesota new COVID-19 epicenter

State epidemiologist commends prevention efforts in Carver County for tapering variant-driven COVID-19 growth.
Sen. Amy Klobuchar spoke Thursday about the importance of vaccination for children and adults with complex health conditions at Gillette Children’s

Minnesota daily COVID-19 count exceeds 2,000 again

Latest uptick in pandemic activity underscores the need to vaccinate Minnesotans who are more at risk.
Gov. Tim Walz received his single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine from registered nurse Kelly Robinson Tuesday, at the Vikings practice facility in Eag

Minnesota COVID-19 hospitalizations back above 400

But hope is vaccine will blunt most severe illness.
Former Republican Gov. Tim Pawlenty and current Gov. Tim Walz rolled up their sleeves to receive their single-shot Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine

Minnesota governors unite over vaccine available for all

State leaders urge people to gain first shot available to them amid uptick in COVID-19 activity in Minnesota.
James Allison, 49, an eight-year veteran with the U.S. Marine Corps, received a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine last week at the Minneapo

COVID-19 positivity rate rises above Minnesota caution level

More than 1 million Minnesotans have completed COVID-19 vaccine series, and 37% of people 16 and older have received at least one dose.
Nurse Winnie Nyabuto vaccinated a patient with a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine.   ] AARON LAVINSKY  aaron.lavinsky@startribune.com

As Minnesota vaccine eligibility expands, so do challenges to find dose

Expansion lengthens the line of vaccine recipients by an estimated 900,000 people, but doesn't increase the vaccine supply.
Raymond Dutrieuille, 59, a Gulf War veteran with the Marine Corps, received a dose of the Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine last week at the Minneapoli

Study in Duluth, seven other sites shows vaccine is 90% effective

A low rate of asymptomatic infection in vaccinated people could have implications for guidance on masks.
Gov. Tim Walz announced Friday that all Minnesotans 16 years of age and older will be eligible for COVID-19 vaccination beginning Tuesday.

Walz: Rural providers, Minnesota's progress influenced move to expand vaccine eligibility

Everyone 16 and older will be eligible for shots starting Tuesday. Some providers will immediately take appointments for newly eligible recipients, while others will focus on the higher-risk population.
People’s Center Clinic medical assistant Sabah Askar gave Diane Snodgrass her second dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine at the clinic.     ] ELIZA

Minnesota's COVID testing positivity rate climbs near 5% threshold

Signs of an uptick of pandemic activity continue in Minnesota, where the positivity rate of diagnostic testing increased to 4.7%
From left, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota nurses Alison Stumne, Tamara Pierre, Jana Wagner and Kirk Randall filled syringes at a North Memori

All Minnesotans 16 and up to be eligible for vaccine on Tuesday

Gov. Tim Walz will make the announcement on Friday. Vaccinators will be asked to prioritize shots to those with high COVID-19 risk.
M Health Fairview nurse Nicole Parr extracted a dose of the Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine recently.

Tiny minority of vaccinated Minnesotans test positive for COVID-19

Doctors report less-severe illness when it does occur in patients following vaccination.
People arrived to be vaccinated at the Vikings Training Center, which was administering the newly available, single dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 va

U.K. COVID-19 variant now widespread in Minnesota

Genomic sequencing has found 479 infections with B.1.1.7, 108 infections with new variants found in California.
People’s Center Clinic medical assistant Kayse Abdirahman prepped doses of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccines at the clinic.

Minnesota reports sixth young COVID-19 death

Minnesota reported its sixth death in someone 24 or younger from COVID-19. Health officials are seeing an uptick in COVID-19 hospitalizations amid progress in vaccinations.
Stephen Van Zee, 43, of Farmington got a COVID-19 vaccine shot on Wednesday at a Thrifty White in Waseca.       ] CARLOS GONZALEZ cgonzalez@startribun

Minnesota seeks gains in COVID-19 workforce vaccinations

No COVID-19 deaths reported Monday, the first daily report without at least one since April 13.
Pharmacy technician Emma Christensen gave a COVID-19 vaccine shot to Robert Kelling, 68, at a Thrifty White in Waseca.

Minn. reports 0 new COVID-19 deaths for first time in months

Declines in mask-wearing and mitigation measures have health officials concerned despite progress and increased vaccinations.
Assistant Commissioner of Health Daniel Huff spoke to the media at the temporary Carver County COVID-19 Testing Site at the Chanhassen Recreation Cent

Mapping of Carver County outbreak unmasks how COVID spreads

Variant-driven cases in Carver County show how web of infections spreads.
“I miss the touch of my grandkids more than anything,” said Bill Layer, 71, of Blaine, after receiving a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine Tues

Minnesota nears 80% COVID-19 vaccination rate in seniors

Vaccination progress considered a key in race against COVID-19 as new variants of the infectious disease emerge.
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota nurse Debra Kloyda administered a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to an elderly woman at North Memorial H

Minnesota hits 500,000 COVID-19 cases, 2M vaccine shots

Walz in quarantine says vaccine milestone is a hopeful sign in Minnesota's year with the pandemic.
Gov. Tim Walz is going to quarantine through March 25 because a member of his staff tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday.   ] RICHARD TSONG-TAATA

COVID-19 exposure puts Walz in quarantine

Gov. Tim Walz is postponing his State of the State Address going into quarantine through March 25 after a staff member tested positive for COVID-19. Walz has not been vaccinated.
Patients who just received a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine waited in an observation area Tuesday afternoon at North Memorial Health Hospital’

Minnesota nears 2 million mark for COVID-19 vaccine shots

Timely second doses urged by Minnesota leaders to boost vaccine effectiveness.
Helped by Minnesota Guard member Marie Howe, student athlete Zoe Thoma, completed a COVID-19 test at the temporary Carver County COVID-19 Testing Site

Lower-risk teens fueling COVID-19 uptick in Minnesota

Race is on to vaccinate higher-risk elderly adults amid COVID-19 case growth in lower-risk teenagers.
M Health Fairview nurse Nicole Parr administered a dose of the Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine on Feb. 19 to James Wells, 73, of Minneapolis, at Shil

'Time to play catch-up' on race gap as vaccine access widens

The latest data show that Blacks make up 6% of the state's population but 3.5% of its vaccine recipients. The the recent expansion to 1.8 million Minnesotans offers a chance to even that out, health officials say.
People’s Center Clinic medical assistant Sabah Askar gave Diane Snodgrass her second dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine.

Minnesota nears a half-million COVID-19 infections

Actual rate of Minnesotans who had COVID-19 could be 20 to 30% given the number of asymptomatic, untested infections.
Gov. Tim Walz is scaling back restrictions designed to slow the spread of COVID-19 because pandemic stats are improving.

Gov. Walz details major rollback of state's COVID-19 restrictions

Larger group events ranging from high school proms to live Minnesota Twins baseball can resume this spring. Restaurants and bars will be allowed to operate at 75% capacity.
Bill Layer, 71, of Blaine, received  a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine Tuesday at North Memorial Health Hospital’s vaccination clinic in Brookl

First sign of South African variant in Minnesota adds to COVID-19 concerns

Mayo study offers new evidence that vaccine prevents asymptomatic cases of COVID-19, and resulting viral spread.
Minnesota Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm got the COVID-19 vaccine from Rachel Slama at the Courage Kenny Rehabilitation Institute in Golden Valley on

Minnesota offers free virus testing after Carver County flare-up

A COVID-19 outbreak related to organized youth sports has contradicted otherwise improving signs of pandemic activity in Minnesota. The state reported 19 deaths and 1,096 cases.
Nancy Andrews, of Fridley, received a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine, administered by nurse Jill Blekestad, Tuesday afternoon at North Memorial

Minnesota exceeds 1.1M virus vaccine recipients

State investigation of Carver County COVID-19 outbreak among young athletes lauded for its tracking of viral spread.
A man used hand sanitizer as he lined up for a COVID-19 vaccine March 3 at the Mall of America. Shots are by appointment only. People are not allowed

Lab reporting backlog adds 138 COVID-19 deaths to Minnesota toll

Four labs now face state investigation, possible administrative penalties for reporting failures.
From left, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota nurses Alison Stumne, Tamara Pierre, Jana Wagner and Kirk Randall filled syringes with the Moderna

State expands vaccine access to chronically ill, front-line jobs

Large group of Minnesotans with underlying health problems, key occupations will receive access ahead of schedule.
A man was vaccinated at the Vikings Training Center that’d been converted into a site administering the newly available, single dose, Johnson & John

More in state may soon be eligible for COVID vaccines

The state is approaching 70% of seniors with the COVID-19 vaccine, which would allow expansion to Minnesotans with certain occupations or chronic conditions.
Trucker Israel Pliego — seen with his 2-year-old son Sebastian — was on a heart-lung bypass machine for 50 days last spring after catching COVID-1

Minnesota's long haul: One year of struggling with COVID-19

Change is the constant as Minnesotans found new pathways to deal with pandemic pressures.
People lined up for their COVID-19 vaccine Wednesday at the Mall of America. Shots are by appointment only.

Minnesota medical providers expand vaccine eligibility

Fairview and CentraCare are among those dropping age criteria to 65 and older as 1.4 million doses have now been administered.
AARON LAVINSKY • aaron.lavinsky@startribune.com M Health Fairview nurse Nicole Parr recently administered a dose of COVID-19 vaccine to retired Carl

Minnesota reports 826 new COVID-19 cases, 13 more deaths

The count for people with at least one vaccine dose now exceeds 836,735.
Leona Murphy, 77, of St. Paul, received a dose of the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine Feb. 5 at a United Family Medicine clinic in St. Paul.       ] AARON LA

Minnesota essential workers, vulnerable get vaccine in April

Once 70% of Minnesota's seniors are vaccinated by the end of March, the state's COVID-19 vaccine rollout will move on to those with underlying health conditions and workers who are at high risk for infection.
Medical assistant Saido Mohamud used a Sharpie pen to tap bubbles out of a syringe earlier this month as she filled it with a dose of the Pfizer-BioNT

Declining COVID-19 ICU admissions in Minnesota a sign of vaccine progress

COVID-19 flare-ups in pockets of rural Minnesota reflect concerns that viral transmission has not gone away.
M Health Fairview nurse Nicole Parr administered a dose of the Pfizer BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine on Friday, Feb. 19, to James Wells, 73, of Minneapolis

State reports 39 COVID-19 bar, restaurant outbreaks in 2021

The Minnesota Department of Health on Monday reported social outbreak data also showing 85 outbreaks involving sports and 23 in fitness clubs and gyms so far this year.
All Minnesotans are encouraged to register for the new COVID-19 Vaccine Connector.

About the Minnesota COVID-19 Vaccine Connector

All Minnesotans are encouraged to register for the new online tool.
Ron Tupy of Apple Valley received a shot of COVID-19 vaccine from nurse Darcey McCampbell recently at a test clinic in Brooklyn Center.

Online tool tells all Minnesotans when they can get virus vaccine

Minnesota debuted a COVID-19 vaccine registration tool Thursday that will notify all people in the state when they are eligible for shots, and give senior citizens immediate access to a lottery for appointments at three state-operated sites.
Students left class at the end of the day Wednesday at Jackson Middle School in Champlin.

Gov. Walz: 'It's time to get our students back in school'

Gov. Tim Walz announced that all Minnesota middle and high schools can opt to bring students back for hybrid or in-person learning as soon as Feb. 22, and all schools should offer it by March 8.
Ron Tupy of Apple Valley, Minnesota received a COVID vaccine shot from Registered Nurse Darcey McCampbell at a clinic in Brooklyn Center. (Glen Stubbe

More than 695K Minnesotans have received COVID vaccine

Health officials remain concerned about more infectious viral variants amid COVID-19 progress, vaccinations.
Michael Osterholm, director of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota and former state epidemiologist at

U's Osterholm joins a call for respecting COVID-19 aerosol threat

The researchers criticized the CDC for acknowledging the aerosol risk last fall but offering no changes in the national COVID-19 response strategy.
Hennepin Healthcare nurse Alison Grover administered the COVID-19 vaccine to Phillip Larkins at Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church last week in Minn

Minnesota COVID-19 cases decline, but variant risks rise

The positivity rate of diagnostic testing has dropped to 3.8% in Minnesota. But health officials have cautioned that the progress could be upset by new, more infectious variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus.
Nurse practitioner Sherry Johnson drew the first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine at St. Luke’s Hospital in Duluth on Dec. 18.

Minnesota's regional providers step up to vaccine challenge

Minnesota's little-known network of eight health care regions has become a key cog in vaccine distribution — filling in geographic or population gaps that are otherwise missed by the state's strategy.
Kari Cline, a nurse and manager, administered a COVID-19 vaccination on Dec. 21 to a doctor at North Memorial Health Hospital.

Minn. reports 914K vaccine doses, boosts national ranking

Minnesota remains better than most states in pace of vaccination, but will learn Monday from one of the fastest — West Virginia — in Senate testimony.
Hennepin Healthcare nurse Alison Grover, cq, administered a Pfizer vaccine to Kathleen Coolidge, cq, at Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church, Thursday

Mask-wearing urged to get state over COVID finish line

New modeling forecast shows sustained decline in COVID-19 deaths in Minnesota through May, despite new viral variant risks.
Minnesota Governor Tim Walz met with Parkview Center School (K-8) principal Kristen Smith Olson and Roseville district nurse and COVID-19 coordinator

Walz touts Minnesota's approach to getting kids back in school

His visit to a school testing clinic coincided with release of a federal school-reopening strategy.
Gov. Tim Walz is dialing back restrictions designed to slow the spread of COVID-19 because pandemic stats are improving. ] ANTHONY SOUFFLÉ • anthon

Walz scales back virus restrictions in Minnesota

Caps on indoor gatherings such as wedding receptions rose from 10 people up to 50. Restaurants can host up to 250 people up to 50% of capacity and remain open until 11 p.m.
The Moderna vaccine.        ] GLEN STUBBE • glen.stubbe@startribune.com   Friday, January 8, 2021

Small Minnesota pharmacies step up to vaccine challenge

Nearly 600,000 Minnesotans have at least received first doses of COVID-19 vaccine as state seeks to quicken pace.
Patients waited in line to be vaccinated on the right, and on the left, to sign up for their second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine in early February at

Almost 600,000 have had at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose in Minnesota

Twenty-four more COVID-19 deaths were reported, including 13 residents of long-term care facilities.
Susan Murr of South St. Paul closed her eyes in anticipation of her COVID vaccine from registered nurse Darcey McCampbell in January at a test vaccine

Minnesota reports increase in COVID-19 vaccine, 11 more deaths

Walgreens opens pharmacy appointments for senior citizens to receive 8,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses, Thrifty White mostly booked up.
Ron Tupy of Apple Valley, Minnesota receives his shot of COVID vaccine from Registered Nurse Darcey McCampbell. Minnesota state officials this week la

Minnesota reports 4% virus positivity, 6 more deaths, amid rising vaccinations

Minnesota's COVID-19 positivity rate has fallen to 4% amid continued signs of declining pandemic activity and rising vaccination numbers.
Medical assistant Saido Mohamud used a Sharpie to tap bubbles out of a syringe as she filled it with a dose of COVID-19 vaccine this month at Minneton

Minnesota now 14th in nation for vaccination distribution

Gov. Tim Walz announced a one-time diversion of 8,000 vaccine doses not being used in long-term care facilities this week to Walgreens pharmacies. Walmart and Thrifty White also are planning to administer 16,000 doses.
Carol Robertson, who is 105 years old and living through her third pandemic, received a COVID-19 vaccination from nurse Amanda Wolak at a HealthPartne

105-year-old Minnesota woman gets her COVID-19 vaccination

St. Paul woman is HealthPartners' oldest recipient so far of COVID-19 vaccine dose.
Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan chatted with a group of curious preschoolers Wednesday during a visit to Mis Amigos Spanish Immersion Preschool in Hopkins to

More than 600K virus vaccine doses given in Minnesota

The target goal is to vaccinate 80% of the population age 16 and older. Lt. Gov. Peggy Flanagan endorsed priority COVID-19 vaccinations for child-care workers and said it is too soon to scale back restrictions.
Michael Osterholm of the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy at the University of Minnesota.

Osterholm: Delay 2nd COVID-19 dose to get more vaccinated

Speaking before a Minnesota House health committee, the epidemiologist said that with many other vaccines immunity protection improves when the doses are spaced out by months. The Minnesota Department of Health said it plans no changes to the dosing schedule.
Nurse Winnie Nyabuto vaccinated a patient with a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine Tuesday afternoon at North Memorial Health Hospital’s

Minnesota COVID-19 positivity lowest since July

Roughly one in 50 Minnesotans have completed two-dose series of COVID-19 vaccine.
An ambulance from North Memorial dropped off a patient last year at North Ridge Health and Rehab in New Hope.

COVID-19 fuels highest annual Minnesota death count

Increases in all causes of mortality in Minnesota in 2020 refute claims that pandemic only killed people who already were going to die.
Patients, including Gerald Sweeney, 79, waited in line to be vaccinated at North Memorial’s Minnetonka Medical Center on Tuesday afternoon.

Cases dropping as vaccination success emerges in Minnesota

Health care systems offer new vaccine slots, which get filled in hours, by senior citizens eager for pandemic protection.
People with appointments waited in line for their COVID-19 vaccine last week at the Earle Brown Heritage Center in Brooklyn Center.

Vaccine numbers nearly eclipse COVID-19 cases in Minnesota

A total of 116,928 people in Minnesota have now received both doses — mostly health care workers and long-term care residents who were prioritized.
Susan Murr of South St. Paul closed her eyes in anticipation of her COVID vaccine from nurse Darcey McCampbell last week in Brooklyn Center.

'Closer to home': State has 35K doses for seniors at 100 sites

Minnesota health officials are shifting away from reliance on nine state-sponsored COVID-19 community vaccination sites that opened two weeks ago toward established local providers, long the backbone for delivering influenza and other vaccinations.
Gov. Tim Walz, right, talked with Jevetta Steele who was checking in people with COVID-19 vaccine appointments on Thursday at the Earle Brown Heritage

Minnesota cuts vaccine sites, adds doses for seniors

Mass state COVID-19 vaccination events will be scaled back across the state this week in order to give more doses to medical providers who can reach out to more of their patients.
Gov. Tim Walz talked with Carmyn Christopherson of Prior Lake, who was getting a COVID-19 vaccine from nurse Kemah Dalmeida, Thursday at the Earle Bro

More than 6% of Minnesotans have received COVID-19 vaccine

State health officials were unclear Friday whether pop-up vaccine sites for seniors and a sign-up lottery will continue next week. The state reported 28 deaths and 1,145 infections.
While at a vaccination clinic in Brooklyn Center on Thursday, a man challenged Gov. Tim Walz, right, about Walz’s policies.

Walz calls better COVID vaccine supply a 'golden opportunity'

Minnesota is faulted for a deliberate vaccine approach, but the payoff is a low rate of wasted doses.
Occupation health nurse Kari Cline prepared a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine for a health worker at North Memorial Health Hospital.

Minnesota COVID-19 positivity rate dips below 5% threshold

The positivity rate of diagnostic testing for COVID-19 has dipped back below Minnesota's warning threshold. The state reported 16 new deaths and 1,335 infections, while more than 5% of Minnesota's population has received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine.
Registered nurse Darcey McCampbell measured a dose of the Pfizer COVID vaccine last week before giving a shot at a test clinic in Brooklyn Center.

Some Twin Cities teachers shut out from COVID-19 vaccine slots

Convention hall at Xcel in St. Paul set to vaccinate 375 teachers per hour.
State Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm said the discovery underscores the need for continued mask-wearing and social-distancing practices.

Nation's first case of Brazilian COVID variant found in Minn.

The more contagious variant was found in a Minnesota resident who recently traveled to Brazil, and underscores the need for continued mask-wearing and social-distancing practices, state health officials said Monday.
Nurse Darcey McCampbell measured a dose of the Pfizer COVID vaccine for Susan Murr of South St. Paul on Thursday at a test clinic in Brooklyn Center.

State's seniors get 24 hours to sign up for vaccine lottery

Starting at 5 a.m. today, Minnesotans 65 and older can register for nine sites administering COVID shots.
Gov. Tim Walz announced progress in vaccinating residents and staff at nursing homes and assisted-living facilities across the state during a news con

Walz: Minnesota heading toward 3 million vaccinated target

State issues new system for connecting independent practitioners, prioritized for vaccine, with clinics providing shots.