About The Story of Medicines

What happens in your body when you pop that painkiller? When did general anaesthesia replace a shot of whiskey in the moments leading up to surgery? How can we make the Canadian health care system work better? Welcome to the Story of Medicines, a leading-edge interactive exhibit about pharmacy's roots, its role, and its promise for a sustainable future in health care.

Pharmacy: Then, Now, And into the Future

The Story of Medicines shares with our visitors pharmacy’s important contribution to human health. Moreover, it forms the community outreach component of a larger endeavour: the Initiative for Sustainable Health Care. Housed at the UBC Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences, the Initiative supports research and dialogue around the most pressing concern facing the Canadian health care system: that while we all value it, we worry about its long-term sustainability. The Initiative's mission is to provide an evidence-based voice and an opportunity to engage stakeholders in an ongoing conversation about the economic principles of health care sustainability, with a focus on the role of pharmacy and pharmaceuticals in effecting change.


UBC Pharm Sci extends sincere appreciation to the following partners for their support of this very significant initiative:

Founding Partners
Amgen Canada Inc., AstraZeneca Canada Inc., Eli Lilly Canada Inc., GlaxoSmithKline Inc., Merck Canada Inc., Novartis Pharmaceuticals Canada Inc., Pfizer Canada Inc.

Founding Members
Boehringer Ingelheim (Canada) Ltd., Hoffman-La Roche Ltd., LifeScan Canada Ltd., Lundbeck Canada Inc.

The Faculty thanks alumnus and pharmacy historian Steve Dove and alumna Louanne Twaites for their assistance with the development of the Origins and Evolutions of Pharmacy exhibit. The Faculty would also like to thank the UBC Pharmacy Alumni Group for its support in making the Interactive Alumni Yearbook exhibit possible.


Origins & Evolutions of Pharmacy traces the history of pharmacy from ancient times to the modern day.

The Journey of a Drug through the Body illustrates pharmacokinetics, or how medications are metabolized in our bodies. Visitors interact with a life-size touchscreen display to select from four body types, a menu of common drugs, and several delivery methods.

The Role of Pharmacy illustrates the many roles and career paths within pharmacy and the pharmaceutical sciences. This part of the exhibit shines a light on past and current careers (for example, working in government, industry or academia, or as a community pharmacist) and looks ahead to the future of pharmacy.

Six Drugs that Changed the World focuses on the history of the six most influential medications of our time. This exhibit also features an interactive game designed to test your knowledge of the drug development process.

All graduating UBC pharmacy classes, from the earliest to the most recent, are included in the Interactive Alumni Yearbook. This touchscreen yearbook features a number of different ways for our alumni to search for fellow classmates and past instructors. Alumni can also share their recent accomplishments by submitting advanced profile information.

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