A women's prison has been heavily criticised in a study for "disturbingly high" levels of attempted suicides and cases of prisoners self harming.
The Independent Monitoring Board found the high levels at Bullwood Hall Prison near Southend where 278 incidents were reported in one month alone.
Governor Mukhtar Poselay said new measures were in place and cases had now fallen to an average of 70 a month.
The monitoring board report covered the 12 months to July 2005.
Bullwood Prison at Hockley has a population of about 184 women prisoners and has workshops, training and education facilities.
Mr Poselay said high levels of attempted suicide and self harm were found across British prisons.
He said: "The deputy governor has led a team called the violence reduction unit and bullying has now been reduced.
"Incidents of attempted suicide and self harm have fallen to less than 70 a month."