If you are a medical practice then it is likely you are deluged with calls from people wanting to buy your x-rays. The reason for the increase is simple to explain. The silver market has exploded over the last few years. Silver is used in electronics and solar panels so the demand has increased. A cheap source for silver is to recycle it from old x-rays.
X-rays are put through a chemical bath of cyanide. The pure silver can then be removed from the solution. The cyanide can then be used again for the next batch of x-rays. The plastic is then just blank sheets and can be recycled. Some are even re-used for another x-ray.
The concern if for the information contained on the x-rays. Since it is patient data it is covered by HIPAA shredding requirements. It needs to be done in a secure manor so no information falls into the wrong hands. HIPAA is not specific as to how the material must be disposed of as long as it is a secure process.
Another concern is that you are getting a good price for your x-rays. There are several factors that will impact the value of your x-rays. The first is the price of silver. If you really wanted to get the most possible you could track the price and wait until it is at a peak. But unless you have tremendous amount this is likely more effort than it is worth.
The second factor is the volume. The secret to all recycling is to have a high volume. This helps cover all of the transportation costs. A few x-rays can be recycled but it isn’t enough for anyone to pay you for them. However, if you have pallets full then you will be able to market them to a range of buyers.
The third factor is the age of the x-rays. As time went buy x-rays were able to use less silver. That made them cheaper but also reduced their value as a recyclable. But the age of the x-rays is not something that you can control so we will move past this.
The fourth factor for the value of your material is how much preparation is required. If the x-rays are in sleeves then they will need to be removed. This can be done by your staff or the recycler can do it for a fee. It all comes down to your labor rates. But since there is patient data on the sleeve many people feel more comfortable performing this work before it leaves the office. Don’t forget to shred the sleeves.
Shred Your X-Rays Today with Help from Shred Nations!
There is no better way to protect your patients than to shred their x-rays. If you have a substantial amount of x-rays to shred, call us at (800) 747-3365 or fill out the form on the right for free quotes. Our local contractors can shred anything from 1 to 100 boxes in no time!