Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. Improper or negligent treatment of a patient, as by a physician, resulting in injury, damage, or loss.
  • n. Improper or unethical conduct by the holder of a professional or official position.
  • n. The act or an instance of improper practice.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. the improper treatment of a patient by a physician that results in injury or loss
  • n. improper or unethical conduct by a professional or official person

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. Evil practice; illegal or immoral conduct; practice contrary to established rules; specifically, the treatment of a case by a surgeon or physician in a manner which is contrary to accepted rules and productive of unfavorable results.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Misbehavior; evil practice; practice contrary to established rules.
  • n. Specifically, bad professional treatment of disease, pregnancy, or bodily injury, from reprehensible ignorance or carelessness, or with criminal intent.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a wrongful act that the actor had no right to do; improper professional conduct
  • n. professional wrongdoing that results in injury or damage

Etymologies

mal- +‎ practice (Wiktionary)

Examples

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  • You can hardly have the heart to scold any more about the malpractice of patients when we believe in you so humbly and so ignorantly.
    --Sarah Orne Jewett, 1884, A Country Doctor

    January 28, 2010