No, they don't have to wait. The ambulance company was sued in the past for doing just that, so they answer every call. And laws were enacted, not for the whiners but for the legitimate errors by medical personnel, which carry over to allow the whiners to abuse them.
California imposes an affirmative duty to act with tort liability and waives sovereign immunity? That seems a bit odd. I know California tort law is more willing to impose duties to act, but it still seems they can make legitimate decisions of where to allocate their resources if they don't have any to spare.
Obama had the 60 votes, and the house.
Actually, that's not true. They had 59 votes, but they never had 60 able to vote (the timing of Franking and Kennedy being key here). And that suggests people like Sen. Machin (who I think voted against the ACA) would have voted for a single-payer option.