Dennis Quaid

Paul Morigi/

Dennis Quaid was a man on a mission today.

Motivated by the pain experienced by his own family, the actor testified before Congress Wednesday about the overdose of blood thinners his newborn twins were given at Los Angeles' Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in November, which led to his current lawsuit against heparin maker Baxter Healthcare Corp.

Taking away individuals' rights to take pharmaceutical companies to court and hold them accountable for their actions would turn consumers into "uninformed and uncompensated lab rats," Quaid said.

In an effort to ward off costly, time-consuming litigation, the Food and Drug Administration has argued in the past on the behalf of the drug makers that federal regulation supersedes the need for state action.

But Quaid, having seen firsthand that government oversight leaves plenty of room for error, doesn't agree.

"Like many Americans, I believed that a big problem in our country was frivolous lawsuits," Quaid testified. "But now I know that the courts are often the only path to justice."

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