LOWER MERION, Pa. (CBS) – In what may be another sign of the tough economy, at least three hospitals in the Delaware Valley are reporting recent thefts of scrap X-ray films that apparently have some cash value.

The thefts were all reported last month, and according to hospital officials and police are consistent with similar thefts that are happening around the country.

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Thomas Jefferson Hospital in Philadelphia, Lankenau Hospital in Lower Merion, and Grandview Hospital in upper Bucks County all say thieves stole old patient films, defective films and blank films that can be washed in chemicals to recover the silver, which can be turned into quick cash.

Police believe the thieves are posing as workers for the company which contracts with the hospitals to remove and recycle the X-rays.

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There’s also concern about identity theft, although hospital officials say the films do not include Social Security numbers, addresses, or any type of financial information.

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Reported by Brad Segall, KYW Newsradio 1060

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