STRUCTURE: A mental health ward where three patients died has reopened following a £3m refurbishment.

Rydon Ward, Somerset Partnership Foundation Trust’s acute mental health ward in Taunton, now has two separate wards with single room, ensuite accomodation as well improved lesisure areas and landscaped gardens.

The Care Quality Commission raised moderate concerns following a visit to the ward in 2010. The regulator said the Rydon ward was not meeting essential standard four that “people should get safe and appropriate care that meets their needs and supports their rights”.

The inspection was triggered by four serious incidents between May and July 2010, which resulted in the death of three people using the service however, following subsequent visits the CQC said it was now satisfied the facility was meeting all essential standards.

The trust received £1.6m from the Department of Health towards the cost of the work.

Trust chief executive Edward Colgan said: “Our patients deserve the best environment we can provide to support their recovery and discharge from hospital. The refurbishment has enabled us to provide two separate wards, both with single room, ensuite accommodation, to ensure patients have high levels of privacy. As well, there are improved lounge and leisure areas, including women-only areas, and landscaped gardens.

“This is the end of the first stage of the building programme on the Cheddon Road site; the next stage will start in June, when Holford Ward, the trust’s psychiatric intensive treatment ward, will be similarly upgraded.”