Identifying diabetes knowledge network nodes as sites for a diabetes prevention program

Health Place. 2006 Dec;12(4):449-64. doi: 10.1016/j.healthplace.2005.05.002. Epub 2005 Jul 5.


This paper reports on the methods used and results of a study that identified specific places within a community that have the potential to be sites for a diabetes prevention program. These sites, termed diabetes knowledge network nodes (DKNNs), are based on the concept of socio-spatial knowledge networks (SSKNs), the web of social relationships within which people obtain knowledge about type 2 diabetes. The target population for the study was working poor African Americans, Latinos, and European Americans of both sexes in a small rural southern town who had not been diagnosed with diabetes. Information was collected from a sample of 121 respondents on the places they visited in carrying out their daily activities. Data on number of visits to specific sites, degree of familiarity with these sites, and ratings of sites as places to receive diabetes information were used to develop three categories of DKNNs for six subgroups based on ethnicity and sex. Primary potential sites of importance to one or more subgroups included churches, grocery stores, drugstores, the local library, a beauty salon, laundromats, a community service agency, and a branch of the County Health Department. Secondary potential sites included gas stations, restaurants, banks, and post offices. Latent potential sites included three medical facilities. Most of the DKNNs were located either in the downtown area or in one of two shopping areas along the most used highway that passed through the town. The procedures used in this study can be generalized to other communities and prevention programs for other chronic diseases.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Community Networks / statistics & numerical data*
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / prevention & control*
  • Female
  • Health Promotion
  • Humans
  • Information Dissemination*
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Male
  • Rural Population
  • United States