Titus Will’s bill from The Everett Clinic for $1.36 million and change. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Titus Will’s bill from The Everett Clinic for $1.36 million and change. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

$1.36 million for a doctor’s visit to the Everett Clinic?

Some patients got sticker shock when they opened their May bills. Another was for $3.6 million.

SNOHOMISH — Titus Will got a jolt when he opened his bill from a walk-in visit to The Everett Clinic.

It said the payment due was $1,363,292.95.

What’s up with that?

“It was kind of a shock,” said Will, 36.

He didn’t freak out. “I knew it was an error. I thought it was more funny than anything.”

Still, he went to the clinic to talk about it. That’s when he realized he wasn’t alone.

“The lady in front of me in line had the same kind of issue,” Will said.

He posted it to Facebook and several people responded with similar bills.

“Nobody had the same number,” he said. “One person said they had a $3.6 million bill.”

Will said he called the clinic’s billing office.

“The lady was really nice. She told me not to worry about it.”

He received a letter a few days later from the clinic offering “sincerest apologies.”

“Dear valued customer,” it read. “Our processing vendor made a mistake that caused an incorrect amount due to print on your bill.”

Titus Will’s bill from The Everett Clinic for $1.36 million and change. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Titus Will’s bill from The Everett Clinic for $1.36 million and change. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Jessica Geurkink, communications manager at DaVita Medical Group and media spokeswoman for The Everett Clinic, said the issue has been “addressed and resolved.”

“On May 24, we discovered that patients whose statements were generated on May 21st, 22nd and 23rd, were mailed miscalculated balances,” she wrote in an email. “Patients received new statements immediately, with the correct amount due and an explanation of what had occurred … We encourage patients that if something ever looks a little off on your statement — whether it’s by one dollar or one million dollars – give us a call.”

Will said the bill is from a clinic visit on Sept. 9. “When it was smoky out last year from the wildfires, I went in because I had a hard time breathing,” he said.

The charge was $262 for what he said was likely triggered by allergies. “The doctor told me to try to avoid smoke, and it was smoky everywhere,” he said.

At that time, ashy pink-gray smoke cloaked the entire Pacific Northwest from fires burning 190,000 acres in Washington and millions more acres in Idaho, Oregon, Montana and British Columbia.

His insurance has a $500 deductible.

“I hadn’t hit my deductible for the year,” he said. “I’ve just been making payments on it each month. My actual balance was $101.09.”

Titus Will of Snohomish received an erroneous bill from The Everett Clinic for $1.36 million for a visit to a walk-in clinic. Will works in billing for ATT, so he understands billing snafus. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Titus Will of Snohomish received an erroneous bill from The Everett Clinic for $1.36 million for a visit to a walk-in clinic. Will works in billing for ATT, so he understands billing snafus. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Will said he’s had fun with the erroneous bill.

“I was thinking, ‘What would it take to actually get a bill that big?’” he said. “I had my kids through Everett Clinic and the birthing doctor, they were good, but my bill was no more than $3,000.”

His kids are 14 and 15. Prices have gone up a bit since.

A routine baby delivery starts at $5,059.25, according to the clinic price list at www.everettclinic.com/healthcare-pricing for those self-paying or without insurance.

A vasectomy is $958.75. A brain MRI is $1,018.75. A first visit with a psychiatrist is $506.50. A typical Botox injection is $2,300.

The surgery fee for a laparoscopic cholecystectomy (aka gallbladder removal) is $1,568.25. That doesn’t include the room — the facility fee is $4,830 — or anesthesia, another $1,001.

So for $1.36 million, about 185 people could get their gallbladders removed. Or one person could get about 600 Botox treatments.

The billing snafu gave Will a chance to see things from the other side.

“I work at AT&T in their billing for the high-level adjustments, so I’ve seen crazy amounts but never seen one for a $1.3 million cell phone bill. Maybe $30,000 at the most, which is a lot,” he said.

These are for real charges, though, not miscalculations.

“People go traveling and get roaming bills. Or they get SIM cards stolen and go crazy and call Cuba or something,” he said. “We choose if it’s a valid adjustment and adjust it.”

_________

This story was first published in the Everett Herald. Contact Andrea Brown: abrown@heraldnet.com; 425-339-3443. Twitter @reporterbrown.

Titus Will of Snohomish received a bill from The Everett Clinic for $1.36 million for a visit to a walk-in clinic. Other Everett Clinic patients also received bills with miscalculated balances, which were corrected. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

Titus Will of Snohomish received a bill from The Everett Clinic for $1.36 million for a visit to a walk-in clinic. Other Everett Clinic patients also received bills with miscalculated balances, which were corrected. (Kevin Clark / The Herald)

More in Northwest

Walkers rest amid the trees at Island Center Forest on Vashon Island, which is part of King County. Many trees around Western Washington are struggling, including Western hemlock on Vashon, likely from drought stress. Photo by Susie Fitzhugh
King County forests are facing new challenges

Hot, dry summers are stressing native tree species in Western Washington.

Washington State Capitol Building. Photo by Emma Epperly/WNPA Olympia News Bureau
Legislation targets rape kit backlog

WA has about 10,000 untested kits; new law would reduce testing time to 45 days

Federal Way resident competes for top 20 spot on ‘American Idol’

Todd Beamer senior Myra Tran previously won “The X-Factor Vietnam” in 2016.

File photo
Law enforcement oversight office seeks subpoena power

Organization has been unable to investigate King County Sheriff’s Office.

State smoking age rising to 21 in 2020

Legislature approves change

Defense Distributed’s 3D printed gun, The Liberator. Photo by Vvzvlad/Wikimedia Commons
‘Ghost gun’ bill moves to Senate committees

Legislation would make 3-D printed guns illegal.

Michelle Obama brings largest crowd of book tour to Tacoma Dome

Former First Lady and author of ‘Becoming’ spends afternoon with local book club prior to event.

A man addresses the King County Council during a public hearing March 20 at New Life Church in Renton. He presented bags filled with what he said was hazardous materials dropped on his property by bald eagles. Another speaker made similar claims. Haley Ausbun/staff photo
Locals show support for King County waste to energy plant

Public hearing on landfill’s future was held March 20 in Renton.

After being homeless, Christy X (pictured) moved into her Coniston Arms Apartments unit in Seattle at the beginning of 2019. She had bounced around from shelters to friends’ places after facing an eviction at her West Seattle apartment in October 2018. A diversion program run by the nonprofit Mary’s Place helped her find housing. File photo
State lawmakers consider eviction reform legislation

Sen. Patty Kuderer, D-Bellevue, is bill’s prime sponsor.

Gov. Jay Inlsee signs into law the Native American Voting Rights Act, which allows a non-traditional address to be used for voter registration for residents who live on reservations. Photo by Emma Epperly/WNPA Olympia News Bureau
Native American Voting Rights Act signed into law

Non-traditional addresses can be used for voter registration on tribal lands

The Cedar Hills Regional Landfill is the only active landfill in King County. It will operate until at least 2028. It has been in operation since the 1960s. Aaron Kunkler/staff photo
Waste study puts numbers behind King County trash alternatives

County has one remaining landfill located near Maple Valley, and it’s nearing capacity

Courtesy photo
State lawmakers seek permanent daylight saving time in Washington

Senate and House are working toward compromise on two bills; voters could decide in November election