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Durham Center for Health Services Research in Primary Care


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Maren K. Olsen, PhD




Dr. Olsen has been the Director of the Durham VAMC Health Services Research Biostatistics Unit since June 2003.  Her research activities have primarily focused on collaborative statistical methodology within the field of health services research.  In this role she has continued to apply and build expertise in three broad methodological areas: complicated longitudinal data structures (including clustered, longitudinal data), multiple imputations of missing data, and two-part models for longitudinal health data.


  • 1999 PhD, Statistics, Pennsylvania State University
  • 1996 MA, Statistics, Pennsylvania State University
  • 1994 BS, Johns Hopkins University


  • 2000-2010 Assistant Professor, Duke University Medical Center.
  • 2000-present  Biostatistician, Health Services Research & Development, VA Medical Center, Durham, NC
  • 2003-present Director, Biostatistics Unit, Health Services Research & Development, VA Medical Center, Durham, NC
  • 2010-present Associate Professor, Duke University Medical Center


  • 2001-2002 Course Co-Director, Introduction to Statistical Methods, Clinical Research Training Program, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC
  • 2003, 2005 Ad Hoc reviewer of the VA Scientific Review and Evaluation Board (SREB) Study Section
  • 2009-2011  Course Co-Director, Clinical Research Seminar, Clinical Research Training Program, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC


  • 1994 Mathematical Sciences Achievement Award, Johns Hopkins University
  • 2004 Second author on paper awarded “Best of JGIM”: Edelman D, Olsen MK, Dudley TK, Harris AC, Oddone EZ.  2004. Utility of Hemoglobin A1c in Predicting Diabetes Risk.  J Gen Intern Med 19(12):  1175-1180.
  • 2011 Second author on “Top 5 Poster” awarded at Chest October 2011. Chiarchiaro J, Olsen MK, Steinhauser KE, Tulsky JA.  ICU Impact on Trajectories of Well-being in Patients With Advanced Chronic Illness Chest October 2011 140:4 Meeting Abstracts 262A; doi:10.1378/chest.1116539


1P01NR010948-01  Tulsky  (PI) 9/23/08-7/31/13 
Self-Management Interventions in Life-Limiting Illness      
Role: Co-Investigator/Statistician

CA100387  Tulsky  (PI) 7/1/09-6/30/14  
Communication in Oncologist Patient Encounters: A Patient Intervention
Role: Co-Investigator/Statistician

IIR 10-050   (Steinhauser) 2/10 – 1/14    
Department of Veterans Affairs
Outlook:  An Intervention to Improve Quality of Life in Serious Illness
Role: Co-Investigator/Statistician

IIR 10-159 (Maciejewski) 9/1/11-8/31/14
Department of Veterans Affairs
Bariatric Surgery’s Return on Investment for Veterans and VHA
Role: Co-Investigator/Statistician

IIR (Voils) 1/1/12-6/30/15
Department of Veterans Affairs
Maintenance after Initiation of Nutrition Training (MAINTAIN)
Role: Co-Investigator/Statistician

IIR 08-297 (Bosworth) 9/1/10-8/30/13    
Department of Veterans Affairs
Cardiovascular Intervention Improvement Telemedicine Study
Role: Co-Investigator/Statistician

View Dr. Olsen's PubMed Link to see her publications