At a No 10 briefing, Ms Patel said a minority were "putting the health of the nation at risk" by flouting rules.
Police are "moving more quickly to issuing fines", she added, with nearly 45,000 fixed penalty notices issued across the UK.
Meanwhile, another 145,076 people have received a first dose of a coronavirus vaccine, and 20,768 a second dose, bringing the totals respectively to 2,431,648 and 412,167.
At the briefing, Ms Patel said: "My message today to anyone refusing to do the right thing is simple: if you do not play your part our selfless police officers – who are out there risking their own lives every day to keep us safe – they will enforce the regulations.
It comes after the UK’s most senior police officer said lockdown rule-breakers are more likely to be fined as Covid laws will be enforced "more quickly".
Metropolitan Police Commissioner Dame Cressida Dick said her officers have had to break up parties, despite hospitals in London struggling to cope with rising patient numbers. UK daily deaths graphic 1px transparent line Chairman of the National Police Chiefs’ Council Martin Hewitt, who also spoke at the Downing Street briefing, said people should be asking themselves whether their reason for leaving home was "truly essential".
He stressed that police officers had been "putting themselves at risk in order to keep people safe", and said it had been "disappointing" to see some of the behaviour by rule-breakers. a boat party in Hertfordshire with a bar and DJ booth, where more than 40 people had each paid £30 for a ticket a minibus full of people from different households travelling from Cheltenham […]