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As the health-care system evolves toward delivering greater value for the patient, orthopaedic surgeons are continually being challenged to manage the health of a population. The traditional focus of scientific inquiry within orthopaedics has been at the individual patient level. The science of health-care delivery is an evolving field that is aimed at bringing rigorous inquiry into determining the proper organizational design that can deliver high-quality and low-cost care for a population. This article provides an overview of basic concepts involved in systems and organizational theory relevant to orthopaedic surgery.