"Tax his car, tax his gas, find a way to tax his *ss."

And they're this far away from doing just that. CVS, Walgreens, Walmart and Phil Paleologos are objecting to a proposed tax on Massachusetts retail health care centers like walk-in clinics, urgent care and some surgical centers.

Take CVS's Minute Clinic for instance, a proposed 8.75 percent tax on charges would only rub salt in the wound and raise our health care costs.

Were you aware that the average wait time to see a doctor is 52 days in Massachusetts, according to the Convenient Care Association? In a time when affordable healthcare care is getting more difficult to find, walk-ins serve a critical need for us. Placing an 8.75 percent tax would make healthcare costs more excessive by adding millions of dollars in a new expenses.

The tax is part of a bill approved by the Massachusetts House that would assess hospitals, insurers and urgent care clinics to provide grants to struggling community hospitals. The proposal is now being discussed in conference committee with members of the Senate.

A tax like this would hurt walk-ins, a piece of the state's healthcare landscape that is currently filling in gaps of care.

I have a better proposal for the pols: take a scalpel and do some surgery on your spending priorities for your special interest friends, and stop taxing us like bloodsuckers.

Phil Paleologos is the host of The Phil Paleologos Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Contact him at phil@wbsm.com and follow him on Twitter @PhilPaleologos. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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