Trust honours pioneering Hackney psychiatrist

Dr Vivienne Cohen (left) with family, colleagues and friends

Dr Vivienne Cohen (left) with family, colleagues and friends - Credit: Archant

Health chiefs have honoured a pioneering psychiatrist who gave 30 years of service by opening a Hackney clinic in her name. Family, friends and colleagues joined the now-retired Dr Vivienne Cohen to cut the ribbon of the new City and Hackney Specialist Psychotherapy Service entrance.

The entrance to the department, in Homerton Road, is called Vivienne Cohen House and has been established to set it apart from the inpatient facilities adjacent to the building.

Marie Gabriel, east London chair of the NHS Foundation Trust, said: “When the need for a distinct name for the clinic was discussed, it wasn’t long before the name Dr Vivienne Cohen emerged as an obvious choice that reflected the history and contribution that psychotherapy services have made to mental health services for residents of City and Hackney.

“I would like to thank Dr Cohen for her long involvement and continued support of psychotherapy services in the borough. She has nurtured this service from its origins, and shared her skills and knowledge with clients, colleagues and trainees. Her legacy continues in the ongoing work of the service.”

Dr Cohen was one of the first consultant psychiatrists in medical psychotherapy to be appointed in the UK back in the sixties, while the profession wasn’t truly established until the 1970s.

She known for her teaching and for working tirelessly past her retirement in 1994 as a job freeze meant she wouldn’t be replaced.

She continues to contribute to the field offering treatment to eight patients weekly.

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Dr Cohen said: “I was really delighted to hear that the Trust wished to name the clinic after me. I was overwhelmed. It is such an honour and I am really grateful.”