Miranda Bailey is probably the most morally sound character on Grey's Anatomy. From the very beginning of the show, Bailey established herself as a strict, no-nonsense surgeon in charge of Meredith and the other interns.
However, as the series quickly progressed, Bailey demonstrated time and time again how much she cared for those in her charge. This developed throughout the show until everyone recognized that Bailey's formidable persona was just a front, concealing a kind and empathetic woman. However, even great characters make mistakes so here are the worst things Miranda Bailey has ever done.
10 Giving Up Her Role As Chief
As well as being extremely principled, Bailey is also really ambitious. She's always ready to go the extra mile in order to advance her career. Throughout the medical drama's run, she has been chief resident and Chief of General Surgery but her greatest accomplishment to date has got to be achieving her dream role of Chief of Surgery.
Which is why it was all the more surprising when she gave the job up (albeit temporarily). Yes, she was trying to alleviate her stress levels after her heart attack, but giving up her dream job just seemed a bit unnecessary.
9 Ignoring Meredith After Catching Her With Derek
Given that Bailey is presented across the whole of Grey's as a firm but fair mother figure to the interns, her actions towards Meredith here seem petty and rather out of character. Midway through Season 1, Bailey catches Meredith and Derek having sex in Derek's car. In classic Bailey fashion, she coldly asks them to move the vehicle to let her out.
The next day, Bailey completely ignores Meredith and goes to great lengths to ensure that Dr. Grey receives no special treatment. Bailey was supposed to encourage and nurture the interns and here she takes an active role in hindering Meredith's education.
8 Being A Sore Loser
In all fairness to Dr. Bailey, Callie becoming chief resident was a surprise to both her and fans alike. However, that's no excuse to belittle a colleague (and friend) just because they achieved something that you desperately wanted.
Callie did struggle in her role as chief resident, and the Bailey everyone thought they knew would have helped immediately, if not a little reluctantly. Instead, Bailey refused to help out her friend and only relented when Callie was on the brink of a personal crisis. Pettiness doesn't look good on anyone, let alone Miranda Bailey.
7 Pushing The Surgeons Too Hard
For such a beloved character, Miranda's time as Chief of Surgery has been fairly rocky. As anyone would, she has most definitely grown into the role but only after a very long adjustment period. Fans weren't used to watching Bailey fail so her first day as Chief made for difficult viewing.
She started off by snubbing her own celebratory party organized by the attending surgeons. She then forced the doctors to devise a surgical plan for a patient with a life-threatening condition in an impossibly short amount of time, which almost led to the patient's death.
6 Firing Meredith, Richard, and Alex
Bailey clearly has a bit of a thing about firing people during her time as Chief. In Season 13, she fired Richard Webber as Residency Program Director and suspended Meredith for refusing to cooperate. However 2 seasons later, Bailey shocked everyone when she fired not just Meredith but Alex and Richard as well.
Arguably, she had no choice with Meredith, who had literally broken the law by committing insurance fraud. However, Richard and Alex didn't deserve to be fired. Their actions weren't brilliant but Bailey should have allowed them to keep their jobs
5 Breaking Up With Ben
Miranda Bailey and Ben Warren are one of the show's cutest couples, but they have had their fair share of ups and downs. Their first break up was a result of the hospital shooting in Season 6 and was understandable given that Ben had been absent so he couldn't fully understand Bailey's trauma.
Their second break up was a little more confusing. Miranda had had a serious heart attack in the previous season and was trying to cut down on the stress in her life. Apparently, this included her relationship with Ben, who had recently become a firefighter. While we can understand where Bailey was coming from, it wasn't fair to blame Ben for her problems.
4 Infecting Her Patients Post-Op
Let's make one thing clear: Miranda Bailey is a good person. Most of her worst moments occurred as a result of her heart being in the right place, bureaucracy or unforeseeable mistakes notwithstanding. Unfortunately, the latter can lead to some truly tragic consequences
After Seattle Grace's aborted partnership with Pegasus, the hospital was still trying to recover. Pegasus had left behind a lot of unwanted baggage, including a batch of faulty surgical gloves. Unbeknownst to her, Bailey was a carrier of MRSA USA600, according to Wiki. She then passed the infection onto some of her patients, who then died. This was absolutely not Bailey's fault, but she did contribute to their deaths, and so it makes this list.
3 Hiring Eliza Minnick
Honestly, it's not clear what exactly Bailey was thinking here, other than she'd completely lost the plot. Sure Catherine basically forced her hand, but it wasn't like Bailey hadn't stood up to her before on more than one occasion.
Eliza Minnick was just an awful person; her insistence on working alone led to Dr. Webber being fired from his Director post. Minnick also caused Grey's Anatomy's first and only civil war amongst the staff. Her worst offense though (and the reason why this was one of Bailey's worst decisions) was that Minnick's incompetence led to Stephanie Edwards suffering severe burns during the hospital fire.
2 Contributing To Eli's Death
One of Bailey's biggest mistakes happened quite recently in the series's 14th season. Eli was a delightfully adorable rabbi who had been coming to Dr. Bailey for a while for antibiotics. During his latest visit, April Kepner noticed that his skin was red and blistering and was beginning to peel off.
It turned out that Eli had developed a bad reaction to the antibiotics that Bailey had prescribed. While this wasn't completely Bailey's fault (as she was just trying to spare Eli from surgery), fans spent half the episode falling in love with the rabbi, so his death came as a devastating shock.
1 Asking Derek To Kill His Patient
Okay, this moment was totally harrowing. In a special three-part storyline in the show's 5th season William Dunn, a dangerous prisoner, arrived at the hospital requiring treatment before his execution, which was due the next week. Also at the hospital was a young patient of Bailey's who desperately needed a new liver and intestine.
Circumstances transpired so that Dunn was a match for Bailey's patient, whose health was rapidly deteriorating. Desperate, Miranda entered Dunn's surgery while Derek was operating and begged him to let the convict's brain die so that he could become an organ donor. While understandable, Bailey manipulated Derek's hatred of Dunn and tried to make him a murderer.