When should health startups turn to the crowd for cash?

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When you see health and wellness companies like Scanadu and Misfit Wearables skyrocket past their Indiegogo fundraising goals in a matter of hours, it’s easy to get gung-ho about raising money from the crowd. But the reality is that, at this point, there aren’t too many huge health-related crowdfunding success stories to point to.

Sure, dozens of small projects and startups on Medstartr, a health-centric crowdfunding startup, have launched successful campaigns in the mostly sub-$30,000 range. But as Patricia Salber, CEO of Health Tech Hatch, told us this week in disclosing that her site was no longer supporting crowfunding alone, getting the crowds to open up their wallets for health startups can be a tricky proposition.

For companies peddling cool devices (like the Scanadu “tricorder” and Misfit’s Shine activity tracker), crowdfunding sites can be a great option for pre-sales and gauging consumer interest. And customers respond…

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