The proliferation of crowdfunding campaigns for operations is dystopian to say the least. Even sadder is that 90% of these campaigns fail, the ones that succeed are adept at marketing according to this study.
This phenomenon is one of the downsides of shifting to high-deductible plans. When most people don’t have enough money to afford a $400 emergency expense, you can see how a catastrophic healthcare bill would blindside a family.
It’s also unfortunate because catastrophes are easier to market for when it comes to crowdfunding — compared to chronic disease or preventive care — which is why they’re typically more successful.
We’re starting to see more health research appeal to the crowds too. Beta Bionics raised $1M from crowdfunding before raising $7.5M more to create an artificial pancreas.
This is happening at an important time, when NIH funding (in inflation adjusted dollars) has been dropping considerably since 2003. This is one of several reasons why less than 20% of projects actually get funded, according to the NIH data.
I’m generally in the camp that the more sources of funding for research the better, though there are some downsides to this too. For example, as we’ll talk about in our consumerization of healthcare research briefing tomorrow, it can appeal more to futurism and desperation than the science can support.
Sure, why not
There’s actually a great new way to crowdfund now. It’s called “adding blockchain to your name.” Apparently even biotech companies want a piece now, with one pivoting its entire business to blockchain.
This can only end well.
Fortunately there are still companies sticking to biotech. We made a market map of companies working on next-gen cancer therapies for our expert intelligence clients.