Can metallized film be recycled? What is the process?

Companies often struggle with metalized film recycling because it is a challenge for those who don’t have the knowledge or the process in place to protect their company. There’s a lot at stake when it comes to film. Film contains both chemicals and toxins that are regulated by local environmental agencies that need to be taken into account. Consider that in addition to the issues at risk around client data and privacy. If you aren’t confident that you are protecting yourself and your company in how you are recycling your film records, you should take care to make sure you are doing it right. Here is some additional information about the process that you should consider.  

Federal Regulations on Film Disposal 

Medical film disposal is a federally regulated act due to the silver content in most x-rays and film. Silver is toxic to microorganisms which are the foundation of the natural food chain. It is very important to prevent silver film coatings from seeping into groundwater, streams or rivers to prevent toxins from contaminating fish and water supplies. For these reasons, the film must be properly handled and disposed of to avoid any negative environmental impacts of its use and disposal.  

Recycling Done Right 

Film recycling is an option for disposing of the medical film in a way that both protects the information contained within and the environment at the same time. Happy Faces has been providing film recycling services for the medical industry for more than 20 years. Our process meets both EPA and HIPAA standards for the disposal and management of these sensitive documents.  

Here’s how we do it at Happy Faces Records Management: 

Step 1 

Separate paper from film and shred all PII from x-ray jackets. 

Step 2 

Grinders reduce film into particle flakes only a half-inch in size making the film unusable and the information contained within incomprehensible.  

Step 3 

Then film particles are tested to measure silver content.  

Step 4 

Silver coatings are separated from film through a four-stage process of chemical burns.  

Step 5 

The emulsified silver and other coatings are sent to settling tanks. Plastics are then cleaned and sent to recycling companies for reuse in clothing and packaging.  

Step 6 

The emulsion mixture is processed to allow the silver to precipitate and the water is then recycled.  

Step 7 

The remaining silver is roasted to ash and all traces of water and other impurities are removed.  

Step 8 

The ash is then smelted until the silver liquefies and cast into ingot molds to cool. The final product is then sent to silver refiners for further processing.  

This highly detailed process ensures that the film is disposed of in a secure and environmentally friendly manner, while silver is recycled and sent out for reuse. Your clients are protected, your company is in compliance, and your future is secure.  

If you find that your current film recycling process isn’t quite up to the level of care required for proper management, it’s time to call the experts at Happy Faces Records Management. We’ll talk you through the expectations and requirements needed for a more effective system that keeps your data safe and your film toxins out of the environment. 

Full-Service Records Management

We focus on securing the win-win-win.

Making our clients and employees happy while maintaining a successful business. The records management business might seem kind of impersonal. But at HF Services, like all of the Happy Faces Family of Companies, our number one goal is making people happy.

The Happy Faces Family of Companies was established in 1995 to create a difference in the corporate world and in the lives of the communities that we serve. We are a full-service records management company dedicated to excellence in customer service.

Our growth and development has aggressively embraced new technologies while maintaining our mission to actively and continuously strengthen our relationships with our customers, employees and the community in which we serve.

Have questions about HF Services Records Management? Ready to arrange a consultation?

Contact Us Today.

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