A mental health trust has been found in significant breach of its authorisation by Monitor, after the Care Quality Commission raised concerns about care.

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Foundation Trust failed to provide effective non-executive leadership in identifying and addressing quality of care risks, Monitor said.

“Despite the fact that the trust has now dealt with concerns raised by the CQC since May 2010, there remains a risk that without effective board oversight further issues may arise,” it said.

It added the trust should now commission a review of governance to understand how the weaknesses can be addressed.

But the trust, which also provides learning disability and childrens’ community services, has undergone enormous change over the last six months, said trust chair Anne Campbell.

A new chief executive, Dr Attila Vegh, started at the end of October after the trust had been without a permanent chief executive for 14 months.  Since then she had seen a new spirit of enthusiasm among staff.

Ms Campbell described Monitor’s decision on the trust being in breach as “a disappointment in view of the rapid improvement we have made”.

Over the last two months, the trust made considerable progress and had resolved issues in the areas where the CQC had issued warnings, she said. More information was coming to the board and an external examination of governance had been started, and one of quality governance planned for April.

The trust has now been reinspected by the CQC, which now only has one moderate concern around patient dignity at one site, Ms Campbell said. The trust had immediately changed clinical and managerial leadership in the ward involved.

“We have learnt…to delve down into detail and find where things have gone wrong,” she said. “I think Monitor are concerned that we need to make the changes sustainable and to ensure that it does not happen again. ‘I would like to see it as a blip…we have learnt some very important lessons.”