BODMIN Hospital's Harvest ward, Cornwall's intensive care unit for people with severe mental ill health, has won a national Patient Safety award.
The psychiatric intensive care ward was one of eight finalists in the Health Service Journal's 'Changing Culture' category which recognises organisations with a commitment to improving patient safety.
Michaela Burt, clinical manager at the Cornwall Partnership NHS Foundation Trust, said: "Patient, staff and visitor feedback led us to review local practice against other wards nationally and with best practice standards. As a result we've made a range of changes to improve both patient care and safety.
"To model Harvest Ward at Bodmin Hospital on best practice nationally, the number of beds was reduced by three. In addition some areas of the ward were redeveloped to provide different therapeutic settings and enhance the overall environment.
"Patients have welcomed the changes we've made. Most importantly they are benefiting from more therapeutic time with nursing staff. This has made a huge difference to their recovery and overall experience".
During a recent visit inspectors from the Care Quality Commission commented on the changes – saying the ward felt much "safer and calmer".
To support the ward staff, members of the trust's board of directors have undertaken regular visits to Harvest to offer expert guidance, support and to enable solutions to be quickly put in place.
Trust chief executive, Phillip Confue, nominated Harvest ward following the significant changes that have been made over the past year.