Furloughed federal workers in New Jersey have one less bill to worry about as several healthcare providers have announced medical co-pays will be waived for as long as the shutdown continues.

RWJBarnabas Health announced on Monday that its health system will waive co-pays, deductibles and additional eligible patient care balances for furloughed federal employees and their dependents. The move applied to all New Jersey hospitals, ambulatory facilities and physician practices operated by RWJBarnabas Health, which is billed as New Jersey's largest integrated health care delivery system.

Hackensack Meridian Health announced Monday it would waive co-pays and deductible charges for emergency visits at network hospitals and urgent care centers for furloughed federal employees and their insured family members. Hackensack Meridian owns and operates 17 hospitals in the state. The network reaches two thirds of the state population.

Cape Regional Health System announced Monday that it will waive all copays and deductibles for emergency-room visits by furloughed employees or their family during the shutdown. Patients are asked to show their government ID upon arrival. Cape Regional Health System includes Cape Regional Medical Center, its flagship hospital, three urgent care facilities, Cape Regional Physicians Associates with over 55 primary care providers and specialists at 13 locations.

Cooper University Health Care on Tuesday announced it will offer furloughed federal government employees and their immediate relatives access to the health system's primary care providers within 24 hours of their call to a dedicated hotline, 856-536-1300. Impacted workers also can visit the system's website at www.cooperhealth.org. Cooper University Health Care includes a network of more than 100 medical offices and four urgent care centers throughout South Jersey.

Tuesday marked the 32nd day of the government shutdown.

Medical care providers are among the growing list of New Jersey businesses that have offered help and support to furloughed federal staff.

After hosting a free lunch in Red Bank on Monday, Jon Bon Jovi's Soul Kitchen has announced another meal this week for furloughed federal workers, this time at the Toms River location.

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