Our History

The University of British Columbia has a long history of being a leader in health professional education. Originating with the work of Dr. John McCreary and the UBC Division of Interprofessional Education in the 1960s, UBC has been committed to interprofessional education (IPE) for training future healthcare professionals to meet the complex needs of society.

The College of Health Disciplines was created in 2001 to advance interprofessional learning and collaborative practice at the university, provincially, and internationally. For a decade and a half, the College worked with the 14 health and health-related programs at UBC to support the development, delivery, and evaluation of a wide range of IPE activities. These activities enabled students from health and health-related programs to graduate with the knowledge, skills, and attitudes central to collaborative practice.

The activities of the College were transferred to the Office of the Provost and Vice-President, Academic in 2015, sustaining the university’s commitment to interprofessional education. This formalized the construct of UBC Health under a new Office of the Vice-Provost, Health, with a core group of faculty and staff from the College continuing to promote the integration of IPE across the university’s health professional programs.

In 2018, UBC created the Office of the Vice-President, Health. Recognizing the complex challenges facing the health and wellbeing of society, UBC’s scope of work expanded from healthcare to health and expanded to encompass collaborative health research and a commitment to action to inform the structures and systems that promote the health of individuals, communities, and societies.

Today, UBC Health works under the Office of the Vice-President, Health to enable and enhance interprofessional and collaborative health education and interdisciplinary research to train people, develop knowledge, and shape policy—ultimately addressing inequities and improving the systems that foster and support health.