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Chief inspector of prisons Nick Hardwick said the report into Wormwood Scrubs prison was "very disappointing".
He said the prison had found it hard to replace experienced staff who left during a major restructuring last year
Although he said there was "some recent evidence" of action being taken to improve performance, there remains "much to be done".
He emphasised the heavy demands being made on staff, saying: "Many staff appeared extremely stretched and some were clearly frustrated that they could not do more; others appeared to have lost focus on prisoners' needs."
One of the country's most well-known prisons has been heavily criticised by inspectors who said it was "filthy", unsafe and under-resourced.
Inspectors said Wormwood Scrubs in west London had "shockingly" failed to put in place recommendations to tackle suicide and self-harm among inmates.
A report from Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Prisons (HMIP) put some of the failings down to a mass exodus of experienced staff after a restructuring last year.
HMIP found many cells meant for one prisoner were holding two, many windows were broken and some of the toilets were filthy.
The report also noted that a "significant" backlog of around 100 new prisoners meant the prison was not coping with the volumes of inmates arriving.