2. Spending money on the wrong priorities
“Companies that have people who’ve never been involved in medical devices before spend money in not necessarily the right order,” Nelson said.
The goal should be to “fail fast” — reducing the risky areas first.
“When we’re working with an early stage startup here and they want to do an entire budget, we say, ‘Let’s take it easy and start with building a prototype,'” Nelson said.
Create a basic prototype, and you can then conduct animal studies, and possibly cadaver studies, to find out how much promise the technology truly has — as well as the most serious failings that need to be addressed as soon as possible.
“Until you do animal studies, you don’t have proof of concept,” Nelson said. “You’ve got to understand what the risks are and address them quickly. It’s like a landmine field. It can be anywhere.”
The catch is having enough money to do the studies and arrive at the proof of concept. That’s why Nelson thinks spending priorities are so important.