Dr Vizard qualified as a Doctor in 1974, as a Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist in 1985 and as a Psychoanalyst in 1992. She is on the GMC Specialist Register (Number 1738984) with a licence to practice. She is an Approved Clinician under section 12(2) of the Mental Health Act 1983.
She trained as a Child Psychiatrist in Great Ormond Street Hospital and has had Consultant Psychiatrist posts in Newham, the Tavistock Clinic and Whittington Health. She is an Honorary Senior Lecturer in the Institute of Child Health, UCL and a visiting professor at New York University London (NYUL).
Dr Vizard has worked for over 35 years with children and families where serious abuse and violence has occurred. In 1986 she set up a treatment service in the east end of London for convicted adult sex offenders. In 1988 she founded a service for children and young people who sexually abuse, in which she was clinical director for 25 years until her NHS retirement in 2014.
Her clinical interests include forensic child and adolescent psychiatry, including Expert Witness work in both Family and Criminal Courts. This work involves the assessment of complex and usually high risk cases where the children concerned usually have several co-occurring mental health or psychiatric disorders. In family proceedings she provides assessments of parenting, placement and treatment needs. In criminal proceedings, she provides psychiatric mental state assessments and assessments of fitness to plead, risk, placement and treatment needs. She also provides treatment services for complex cases, including family work, cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and individual work with children and adolescents.
Dr Vizard has published extensively and has over 100 publications, mostly in the area of child abuse, notably child sexual abuse. She has researched into the origins of child maltreatment by adults and by other children and has taught extensively on child care and child abuse nationally and internationally.
She is an invited lecturer to many Universities and academic institutions in the UK and internationally. She has lectured extensively on child mental health matters to the legal profession including the Judiciary, the Criminal Bar Association and other legal groups. She also undertakes media work to raise awareness of child mental health issues. Dr Vizard was awarded the C.B.E. (Commander of the British Empire) in the New Year’s Honours List on 31.12.11 for ‘services to children and to young people’.