Meet Dr. Hall, Q Care Plus’s Chief Medical Officer
Meet the leader behind our medical team, our recently appointed Chief Medical Officer Dr. Christopher Hall.
With a rich history working in the infectious diseases care and prevention space, Dr. Hall brings decades of clinical and programmatic experience to Q Care Plus.
Dr. Hall has served in many roles in medical practices and local, state, and national organizations, where he worked on policy, research, and program development across the country to bring more HIV awareness and prevention to diverse communities.
Q Care Plus: What led you to where you are today and why did you choose the HIV space to practice in?
Dr. Hall: I may be an infectious disease physician now, but I was once a young gay man in the midst of a roaring HIV epidemic in Washington, DC and NYC.
Before 1996 highly effective therapy was unavailable, and the disease was unrelenting. It was killing my friends and neighbors. I remember multiple occasions going to my doctor, by then convinced I had become HIV-positive, waiting 2 weeks for a test result. This process was so paralyzing and overwhelming that in 25 years, I probably was only tested 3 times.
And each time was a rollercoaster of fear and emotions. Nothing like PrEP was available, and our community did not have the benefit of U=U as relates to effective HIV antiretroviral therapy.
Q Care Plus: Thank you for sharing that, it’s definitely humbling to consider how far we have come. If you had access to something like Q Care Plus during that time, how would your life have been different?
Dr. Hall: Had Q Care Plus existed then, I would have been tested frequently. Maybe even 3-4 times per year, as CDC has recommended for almost 20 years now.
I, like many others I know, did not want to go to a clinic or community-based testing center for regular testing. It was too triggering in terms of self-criticism and guilt around HIV that was all too pervasive at that time.
Also facing a health care provider in person and talking about my sex life was not a welcome idea. HIV testing in that era potentiated of all the fears of the disease that had ramped up over a decade of living as a young gay man.
Our healthcare system needs competent, sex-positive digital providers like Q Care Plus that can truly meet people where they are.
And where they are is where they live, free of triggers that inhibit their access to health services.
Q Care Plus: So what about telehealth stands out to you as a way to close gaps in HIV prevention services for people nationally?
Dr. Hall: Digital providers like Q Care Plus pose a solution for people who would benefit from testing, prevention, and treatment for STIs, HIV, and other conditions. And for certain persons thinking about HIV prevention, Q Care Plus will also make the difference in whether an unplanned pregnancy occurs.
Q Care Plus: Why do you think there are so many individuals who could benefit from PrEP who are not using it?
Dr. Hall: Unlocking the potential PrEP offers our communities requires access. Access that overcomes the digital divide, limited access to smart phones and broadband, and creative financing solutions that render PrEP medications, expensive lab tests, and the care and attention of clinical providers affordable.
At Q Care Plus, affordability means a no-cost experience if at all possible. Folks have enough to consider in thinking about engaging with PrEP such that the financial challenges of participation must not be an issue.
And even though U.S. healthcare policy has sought to require that PrEP care be free, we know the devil is in the details. A PrEP program delivering competent care is only as effective as its benefits navigators, and at Q Care Plus I’m proud we have designed a service with knowledgeable Support personnel as well as experienced care teams that include medical assistants, nurses, and clinicians.
Delivering accessible PrEP is a team effort!
Having supervised physicians, nurse practitioners, physician assistants, nurses, and medical assistants in my past lives, I am certain that the care provided at Q Care Plus not only meets but dramatically exceeds that which is provided in many brick-and-mortar settings.
Q Care Plus: Why do you think that is?
Dr. Hall: Because our care model at Q Care Plus is ultimately patient-centered in a way that traditional medicine has failed to be: it meets patients logistically where they are, it provides seamless access to skilled and what I call “community-competent” providers, it facilitates required laboratory testing on a remote basis, and it ensures follow-up alternatives no matter where the patient lives.
Traditional medical care has become oppressively metric-driven because of complicated health economics and the ownership structure of practices and clinics. It inhibits practitioner-level innovation, flexibility, and freedom in terms of the time required to provide quality care.
Those metrics also lead to patient dissatisfaction because they don’t feel thoroughly supported and cared for when access to clinicians is so limited.
Q Care Plus: Definitely! Telehealth is the future, and we are proud to trailblaze a path for lifesaving, supportive, quality care. What do you love most about Q Care Plus?
Dr. Hall: I have signed on to building Q Care Plus because of a lifetime of personal and professional experiences that have convinced me that digital, remote health is what patients in our communities want and need.
Lives will be saved, and patient autonomy and privacy will be honored through digital health. Quality of care will be improved by digital health. Our patients at Q Care Plus tell us that. Our phenomenal growth proves it.
Lastly, the team of diverse, experienced, and passion-driven clinical providers we have assembled is a dream. I have never been surrounded by such a talented group of providers. They know their communities.
The have created change in areas of the country where such work is entirely uphill. And they care – they care about every patient they virtually touch, and want to help them live safe, satisfying, healthy lives. I can’t imagine working anywhere else!
Q Care Plus: Thank you for chatting, Dr. Hall!
Are you ready to see what makes Q Care Plus a sought-after PrEP provider for thousands of people across the country? Go to qcareplus.com to create a profile and speak with someone–like Dr. Hall–from our medical team today!
Ready to get PrEP’d?