The University of Michigan, an encyclopedic survey ... Wilfred B. Shaw, editor.
University of Michigan.
University Hospital Pharmacy

During the years (1869-90) forming the initial period in the history of the University Hospital, there was no obvious need for a separate pharmaceutical service.

In 1892, when the University Hospital was moved to new quarters on Catherine Street, the rules and regulations adopted for the conduct of the newly created post of Apothecary were as follows:

The Apothecary shall be subordinate and responsible to the Resident Physician. He shall have the immediate care and custody of all drugs, medicines and other articles belonging to the department and be responsible for the same. He shall compound and make up all medicines which may be prescribed with exactness and promptitude. He shall deliver no medicines or other articles unless the same shall be duly entered upon the prescription or order books, or ordered in writing. He shall put up the medicines intended for each ward separately and shall annex to them labels containing the names of the patients for whom they are respectively prescribed, with written or printed directions for their use. He shall deliver them promptly to the nurses of each ward to be by them administered Page  994to the patients. He shall be responsible for the correct preparation of all prescriptions. He shall have charge of all the instruments belonging to the Hospital and shall be responsible for them and their good order. He shall keep an account of them and shall never allow them to leave his possession without taking a proper receipt or ticket from the person so taking them. He shall make an inventory of all instruments belonging to the hospital, when he enters upon his duties; and, on giving up his charge, he shall furnish the Superintendent a like inventory countersigned by the Resident Physician. He shall keep the dispensary and everything pertaining to it clean and in perfect order, and the same shall remain open from 8:30 a.m. to 8:00 p.m., in his charge. He shall observe economy in everything relating to his department, be particularly careful in the preparation and delivery of medicines, and permit no noise, confusion or disorder in his premises.


(R.P., 1886-91, p. 535.)

Having thus outlined his duties, the Regents authorized that an apothecary be appointed in the University Hospital for one year at a salary of $200. In carrying out the intent of the Regents the executive committee appointed James Perry Briggs ('91p) to the position.

Mr. Briggs's duties covered a very wide field. He prepared all the sutures used in the operating rooms, and, after the initial pictures taken by Carhart and Herdman, he was assigned the task of taking the first X rays used here, continuing all work of this nature until the Department of Roentgenology was established.

Mr. Briggs's association with the institution cannot be passed without mention of his wide acquaintanceship, especially in the "old Hospital," and his kindness to those with whom he worked. He was particularly happy to help the nurses. He removed stains from uniforms or best dresses and provided remedies for headache, a cold, or a cold sore. His "favorite prescriptions" were never disclosed, and no record of them has ever been found.

A bronze tablet now placed at the location of the present Hospital Pharmacy befittingly states: "In Memory of James Perry Briggs, Ph.C., Pharmacist to the University Hospital, 1891-1927. Universally Respected and Beloved by Those Connected with This Hospital During His Long and Faithful Term of Service."

Mention of Perry Briggs, despite the fact that a written record of the Hospital Pharmacy is his biography, would be quite incomplete without coincident mention of "Pat Scully." The bronze tablet opposite that of Mr. Briggs tells its story. This continuing association of these two names is very satisfying to their friends: "In Memory of Patrick Henry Scully Who Devotedly Served This Hospital In Many Capacities For More Than Half A Century. 1875-1929."

In 1920 Amos Ludwig Kroupa (Ph.C. '22) became Assistant to the Pharmacist. He retained this post until 1936, when he accepted an appointment as Chief Pharmacist at the Evangelical Deaconess Hospital at Evansville, Indiana.

In 1925 Harvey A. K. Whitney (Ph.C. '23) joined the staff, and he became Chief Pharmacist upon the death of Mr. Briggs in 1927.

The department has gradually grown in range of activities and in personnel. During a changing materia medica the Hospital Pharmacy has been allowed to engage in many manufacturing activities that were previously prohibited. The staff in 1940 consisted of eleven registered graduate pharmacists and five unlicensed assistants. The products of the department are obtained from the three kingdoms and are prepared to be administered by all natural bodily orifices, as well as some man-made, as when access is to the circulatory system.

One interesting development in the growth of the department has been the Page  995establishment of a pharmacy internship plan, adapted from present medical practices. Six pharmacy interns are quartered with the medical interns and enjoy the same privileges. The plan calls for the selection of a candidate from among the recent graduates of one of the member schools of the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy. Such an applicant when accepted receives an appointment as junior grade pharmacist for one year. He may be reappointed for a second year as senior grade pharmacist.