Milepost Media

Sheila M. Eldred


Milepost Media

As a freelance journalist specializing in health and parenting, Sheila Mulrooney Eldred writes about everything from cancer to birth disparities to nuns helping advance Alzheimers' research. Her stories have appeared in The New York Times, the Washington Post, Nature, FiveThirtyEight, Pacific Standard, STAT News and other publications. (Why Milepost? Sheila and her family love to explore the many miles of Minnesota's mountain bike, ski and running trails.)


Recent Health Central stories

I'm on the cancer beat at Health Central, a website devoted to patient health. Read my recent stories here.
HealthCentral Link to Story

How an Illness Outbreak Started on Lake Minnetonka

The annual boat tie-up party near Big Island on Lake Minnetonka had been a success: A threatening rainstorm proved short-lived, the temperature peaked at 85, people ate and drank, no one drowned. For most of the day, revelers hopped from boat to boat or jumped in the shoulder-high water. There were kids, grandparents, and lots of recent grads from Orono and Mound Westonka high schools.
Mpls. St. Paul Magazine Link to Story

Transphobia Is Hazardous to Your Health

When her child was 7, Pam decided to have a conversation with the family’s pediatrician. Her daughter, Andrea, who loves softball, dance, Pokémon GO, and hanging out with friends, had just started seeing a therapist as a first step in transitioning genders. “I knew that my child would benefit from seeing a doctor who had experience working with gender health,” Pam says.
Mpls. St. Paul Magazine Link to Story

Roast That Marshmallow in Mandarin, Soldier!

It's a late spring afternoon at the Finnish village, with birds chirping and sunbeams streaming through an open window. Nine campers sit deep in concentration, attempting to mimic the nature paintings and poetry of a famous Chinese artist. They’re at least a decade older than the usual campers who flock every summer to the Concordia Language Villages, outside Bemidji.
Mpls. St. Paul Magazine Link to Story

New Approaches to Antibiotic Resistance

Just days after a routine knee operation, Meg Jones was rushed into a second, emergency surgery for hospital-­acquired MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus), a type of staph bacteria. (photo credit: ASU)
Experience Life Link to Story

Why Do 9-Year-Old Girls and Boys Play on Separate Teams?

On spring evenings, a few years back, Annabella Rozin and her family would walk over to a neighborhood park in south Minneapolis for baseball practice. From kindergarten through second grade, Annabella loved playing with her neighborhood friends, many of them boys. But in third grade, most girls in the park league switch over to softball.
Mpls. St. Paul Magazine Link to Story

They’re out in the woods picking up ticks — on purpose

It’s a picture-perfect summer day in the woods of central Minnesota: 71 degrees, humidity around 73 percent, sunshine dappling the trees and glinting off glimpses of the Mississippi River. But as five scientists pull on white painter suits and start duct-taping the cuffs to their hiking boots, no one is certain if the conditions will be ideal enough to complete their task for the day: catching about 300 ticks, both adults and 150 nymphs.
The Washington Post Link to Story

Inside Mosquito Central

We can fight them in our backyards or we can fight them in the field: An MMCD staffer does a briquette treatment at a mosquito breeding site. Eight cups of dead mosquitoes from last summer linger in Dave Neitzel’s freezer. Each contains 6,000–8,000 mosquitoes, a body count he can sort through in a couple of days.
Mpls. St. Paul Magazine Link to Story

Studying the Success of a North Minneapolis Birth Center

Step into the bathroom at Roots Community Birth Center in north Minneapolis, and you might forget why you’re there. The soft lighting, stone laminate flooring, and gray paint suggest the powder room in one of the neighboring houses, rather than a place to deposit a urine specimen. You’ll find no instruction card on which wipes to use, no window to pass your cup into a lab.
Mpls. St. Paul Magazine Link to Story

Device Changes Lives of People With Spinal Cord Injuries

When Kathy Allen left the hospital, following a 2006 sleepwalking fall from a second-story deck, doctors told her she wouldn’t be able to walk again. That was hard to hear, of course, but she believed she could accept it. difficult to even imagine—were the “little” things Allen would no longer be able to do, such as going to the bathroom when she felt like it, or sitting without wobbling.
Mpls. St. Paul Magazine Link to Story

Where Interpreters Are Scarce, Health Care Is Lost in Translation

Long before he began studying for a career in health care, Marlon Munoz performed one of the most sensitive roles in the field: Delivering diagnoses to patients. As an informal interpreter between English-speaking doctors and his Spanish-speaking family and friends, Marlon knew well the burden that comes with the job.
Undark Link to Story

Fitness For 2

Last year, I ran the Boston Marathon, cycled most of the 150 miles from Duluth, Minn., to St. Paul and canoed 140 miles down a creek in Alaska — all while pregnant with my first child. While I strived to maintain my fitness, I also spent countless hours worrying about possible side effects. Despite current research that links healthy exercise to a healthy baby, confusion and misinformation persist.
Experience Life Link to Story


Milepost Media

Sheila Mulrooney Eldred is a graduate of Columbia's School of Journalism and a former newspaper reporter. She lives in Minneapolis with her husband and two kids. Click on the resume icon to read more about her career.