2307.91 Asbestos claims - definitions.

As used in sections 2307.91 to 2307.96 of the Revised Code:

(A) "AMA guides to the evaluation of permanent impairment" means the American medical association's guides to the evaluation of permanent impairment (fifth edition 2000) as may be modified by the American medical association.

(B) "Asbestos" means chrysotile, amosite, crocidolite, tremolite asbestos, anthophyllite asbestos, actinolite asbestos, and any of these minerals that have been chemically treated or altered.

(C) "Asbestos claim" means any claim for damages, losses, indemnification, contribution, or other relief arising out of, based on, or in any way related to asbestos. "Asbestos claim" includes a claim made by or on behalf of any person who has been exposed to asbestos, or any representative, spouse, parent, child, or other relative of that person, for injury, including mental or emotional injury, death, or loss to person, risk of disease or other injury, costs of medical monitoring or surveillance, or any other effects on the person's health that are caused by the person's exposure to asbestos.

(D) "Asbestosis" means bilateral diffuse interstitial fibrosis of the lungs caused by inhalation of asbestos fibers.

(E) "Board-certified internist" means a medical doctor who is currently certified by the American board of internal medicine.

(F) "Board-certified occupational medicine specialist" means a medical doctor who is currently certified by the American board of preventive medicine in the specialty of occupational medicine.

(G) "Board-certified oncologist" means a medical doctor who is currently certified by the American board of internal medicine in the subspecialty of medical oncology.

(H) "Board-certified pathologist" means a medical doctor who is currently certified by the American board of pathology.

(I) "Board-certified pulmonary specialist" means a medical doctor who is currently certified by the American board of internal medicine in the subspecialty of pulmonary medicine.

(J) "Certified B-reader" means an individual qualified as a "final" or "B-reader" as defined in 42 C.F.R. section 37.51(b) , as amended.

(K) "Certified industrial hygienist" means an industrial hygienist who has attained the status of diplomate of the American academy of industrial hygiene subject to compliance with requirements established by the American board of industrial hygiene.

(L) "Certified safety professional" means a safety professional who has met and continues to meet all requirements established by the board of certified safety professionals and is authorized by that board to use the certified safety professional title or the CSP designation.

(M) "Civil action" means all suits or claims of a civil nature in a state or federal court, whether cognizable as cases at law or in equity or admiralty. "Civil action" does not include any of the following:

(1) A civil action relating to any workers' compensation law;

(2) A civil action alleging any claim or demand made against a trust established pursuant to 11 U.S.C. section 524(g) ;

(3) A civil action alleging any claim or demand made against a trust established pursuant to a plan of reorganization confirmed under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code, 11 U.S.C. Chapter 11.

(N) "Exposed person" means any person whose exposure to asbestos or to asbestos-containing products is the basis for an asbestos claim under section 2307.92 of the Revised Code.

(O) "FEV1" means forced expiratory volume in the first second, which is the maximal volume of air expelled in one second during performance of simple spirometric tests.

(P) "FVC" means forced vital capacity that is maximal volume of air expired with maximum effort from a position of full inspiration.

(Q) "ILO scale" means the system for the classification of chest x-rays set forth in the international labour office's guidelines for the use of ILO international classification of radiographs of pneumoconioses (2000), as amended.

(R) "Lung cancer" means a malignant tumor in which the primary site of origin of the cancer is inside the lungs, but that term does not include mesothelioma.

(S) "Mesothelioma" means a malignant tumor with a primary site of origin in the pleura or the peritoneum, which has been diagnosed by a board-certified pathologist, using standardized and accepted criteria of microscopic morphology and appropriate staining techniques.

(T) "Nonmalignant condition" means a condition that is caused or may be caused by asbestos other than a diagnosed cancer.

(U) "Pathological evidence of asbestosis" means a statement by a board-certified pathologist that more than one representative section of lung tissue uninvolved with any other disease process demonstrates a pattern of peribronchiolar or parenchymal scarring in the presence of characteristic asbestos bodies and that there is no other more likely explanation for the presence of the fibrosis.

(V) "Physical impairment" means a nonmalignant condition that meets the minimum requirements specified in division (B) of section 2307.92 of the Revised Code, lung cancer of an exposed person who is a smoker that meets the minimum requirements specified in division (C) of section 2307.92 of the Revised Code, or a condition of a deceased exposed person that meets the minimum requirements specified in division (D) of section 2307.92 of the Revised Code.

(W) "Plethysmography" means a test for determining lung volume, also known as "body plethysmography," in which the subject of the test is enclosed in a chamber that is equipped to measure pressure, flow, or volume changes.

(X) "Predicted lower limit of normal" means the fifth percentile of healthy populations based on age, height, and gender, as referenced in the AMA guides to the evaluation of permanent impairment.

(Y) "Premises owner" means a person who owns, in whole or in part, leases, rents, maintains, or controls privately owned lands, ways, or waters, or any buildings and structures on those lands, ways, or waters, and all privately owned and state-owned lands, ways, or waters leased to a private person, firm, or organization, including any buildings and structures on those lands, ways, or waters.

(Z) "Competent medical authority" means a medical doctor who is providing a diagnosis for purposes of constituting prima-facie evidence of an exposed person's physical impairment that meets the requirements specified in section 2307.92 of the Revised Code and who meets the following requirements:

(1) The medical doctor is a board-certified internist, pulmonary specialist, oncologist, pathologist, or occupational medicine specialist.

(2) The medical doctor is actually treating or has treated the exposed person and has or had a doctor-patient relationship with the person.

(3) As the basis for the diagnosis, the medical doctor has not relied, in whole or in part, on any of the following:

(a) The reports or opinions of any doctor, clinic, laboratory, or testing company that performed an examination, test, or screening of the claimant's medical condition in violation of any law, regulation, licensing requirement, or medical code of practice of the state in which that examination, test, or screening was conducted;

(b) The reports or opinions of any doctor, clinic, laboratory, or testing company that performed an examination, test, or screening of the claimant's medical condition that was conducted without clearly establishing a doctor-patient relationship with the claimant or medical personnel involved in the examination, test, or screening process;

(c) The reports or opinions of any doctor, clinic, laboratory, or testing company that performed an examination, test, or screening of the claimant's medical condition that required the claimant to agree to retain the legal services of the law firm sponsoring the examination, test, or screening.

(4) The medical doctor spends not more than twenty-five per cent of the medical doctor's professional practice time in providing consulting or expert services in connection with actual or potential tort actions, and the medical doctor's medical group, professional corporation, clinic, or other affiliated group earns not more than twenty per cent of its revenues from providing those services.

(AA) "Radiological evidence of asbestosis" means a chest x-ray showing small, irregular opacities (s, t) graded by a certified B-reader as at least 1/1 on the ILO scale.

(BB) "Radiological evidence of diffuse pleural thickening" means a chest x-ray showing bilateral pleural thickening graded by a certified B-reader as at least B2 on the ILO scale and blunting of at least one costophrenic angle.

(CC) "Regular basis" means on a frequent or recurring basis.

(DD) "Smoker" means a person who has smoked the equivalent of one-pack year, as specified in the written report of a competent medical authority pursuant to sections 2307.92 and 2307.93 of the Revised Code, during the last fifteen years.

(EE) "Spirometry" means the measurement of volume of air inhaled or exhaled by the lung.

(FF) "Substantial contributing factor" means both of the following:

(1) Exposure to asbestos is the predominate cause of the physical impairment alleged in the asbestos claim.

(2) A competent medical authority has determined with a reasonable degree of medical certainty that without the asbestos exposures the physical impairment of the exposed person would not have occurred.

(GG) "Substantial occupational exposure to asbestos" means employment for a cumulative period of at least five years in an industry and an occupation in which, for a substantial portion of a normal work year for that occupation, the exposed person did any of the following:

(1) Handled raw asbestos fibers;

(2) Fabricated asbestos-containing products so that the person was exposed to raw asbestos fibers in the fabrication process;

(3) Altered, repaired, or otherwise worked with an asbestos-containing product in a manner that exposed the person on a regular basis to asbestos fibers;

(4) Worked in close proximity to other workers engaged in any of the activities described in division (GG)(1), (2), or (3) of this section in a manner that exposed the person on a regular basis to asbestos fibers.

(HH) "Timed gas dilution" means a method for measuring total lung capacity in which the subject breathes into a spirometer containing a known concentration of an inert and insoluble gas for a specific time, and the concentration of the inert and insoluble gas in the lung is then compared to the concentration of that type of gas in the spirometer.

(II) "Tort action" means a civil action for damages for injury, death, or loss to person. "Tort action" includes a product liability claim that is subject to sections 2307.71 to 2307.80 of the Revised Code. "Tort action" does not include a civil action for damages for a breach of contract or another agreement between persons.

(JJ) "Total lung capacity" means the volume of air contained in the lungs at the end of a maximal inspiration.

(KK) "Veterans' benefit program" means any program for benefits in connection with military service administered by the veterans' administration under title 38 of the United States Code.

(LL) "Workers' compensation law" means Chapters 4121., 4123., 4127., and 4131. of the Revised Code.

Effective Date: 09-02-2004