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Dexter Blackstock – striker to blockchain visionary

Dexter Blackstock was a striker for Southampton FC in the Premier League before stints for Queens Park Rangers and Nottingham Forest in the Championship.

However, Dexter Blackstock, 35, has his sights set on becoming CEO of a billion-dollar unicorn with his MediConnect start-up.

It is estimated that around 200,000 people in Britain alone are addicted to powerful opioid painkillers, which has become an epidemic in the States. Addicts repeat order through online medicine websites, with no way of checking if their prescriptions are legitimate or if they’re over ordering.

Blackstock founded MediConnect in 2017 – the same year he retired from football after a short stint at Rotherham United – after spotting the problem facing online pharmacies.

Because they are all separate private businesses, online pharmacies do not share customer information – which leaves prescribing drugs ripe for abuse.

Blackstock told NS Healthcare: “It means one person could potentially get the same medication from two different sources because there’s no way of knowing what they received beforehand.

“The system can be abused and people die every day from it.”

Another use of blockchain when it comes to prescription drugs is being able to spot counterfeit drugs. In Uganda, 10 per cent of all drugs are counterfeit and Ugandan president Yoweri Musevini has mooted using MediConnect to stamp out fake medicine.

Last year, MediConnect extended its blockchain solution to tracking counterfeit PPE bought by hospitals to protect them against Covid.

Blackstock wants the UK to become the gold standard for online pharmacy security and also extend his technology solution to the NHS.

“If we can prove it works in the online world, it could work for national health services globally and one day become a billion-dollar company.”

Further reading

Who were the Dragons’ Den Dragons and where are they now?

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Tim Adler

Tim Adler is group editor of Small Business, Growth Business and Information Age. He is a former commissioning editor at the Daily Telegraph, who has written for the Financial Times, The Times and the...

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