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Byline: Shanon Murray with staff reports
Establishing medical criteria as a way to pare down the legions of asbestos claims faced by companies is in the forefront of asbestos reform, but one alternative -- a massive national trust fund -- recently received a full airing in Congress.
The trust would be financed by payments from asbestos defendants, including bankrupt ones, and insurers. The payment schedule for victims would be based on medical criteria that distinguish between different types of asbestos-related diseases and different levels of severity.
Among the trust's supporters are The Asbestos Study Group, which represents major U.S. companies; the AFL-CIO labor union; and David T. Austern, general …