Everyone's looking for safe harbors to park their cash amid a downwardly mobile market and globally fulminating economic turmoil. To merely beat the bear market, a stock needs to do better than lose nearly 20% of its value so far in 2022. The good news is that there are plenty of portfolio-ready stocks that continue to outperform.

But to really defy the bear market, a stock should grow rather than merely fall slightly less than everything else. With that standard in mind, let's examine a couple of top healthcare stocks that are powering onward despite stormy waters.

1. Veru

With shares of Veru (VERU -3.15%) stock galloping upward by almost 102% so far this year, the market clearly has a rosy view of this biotech's future. The company has two divisions, one for its reproductive health products and one for its cancer and COVID-19 therapies. But what's really driving the stock are two products:  Entadfi, which treats benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) and which was just launched in August; and sabizabulin, which is being evaluated to treat severe COVID-19 as well as certain types of breast and prostate cancers.

There isn't any sales data on how Entadfi is performing yet, but as soon as the fourth quarter, investors should get an update on how much the drug is contributing to Veru's top line, which totaled over $61.2 million in 2021. With sabizabulin, the prospect of revenue is a bit further off, but the Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) nonbinding advisory committee will vote on November 9 regarding the company's application for an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). If the drug gets approved, it could launch and start bringing in money in early 2023, and management anticipates treating somewhere in the ballpark of 630,000 patients per year.

And that could make Veru into a very valuable company very quickly, so it's no surprise that its stock is soaring even if the market is declining. Over the next few years, its late-stage trials investigating sabizabulin for prostate and breast cancers could get approved and commercialized, which would drive even more growth. Aside from that, expect its shares to keep climbing if Entadfi revenue looks strong out of the gate and for it to climb even more if sabizabulin gets a positive reception from regulators in a couple of months.

2. AbbVie

Unlike Veru, AbbVie (ABBV -0.76%) is a major pharmaceutical company rather than a scrappy biotech. So it shouldn't be too surprising that its shares are up a more modest 9% this year as it's much harder to convince the market that a business is going to grow a huge amount when its trailing 12-month revenue is more than $57.3 billion. Nonetheless, with its quarterly free cash flow (FCF) rising by 102% in the last five years, it's clear that AbbVie's investment potential is far more than a short-term bear-market play.

AbbVie's key to success is its portfolio of immunology medicines, which brought in more than $7.2 billion in Q2 alone. The newest members of that portfolio, Skyrizi and Rinvoq, treat conditions like Crohn's disease, ankylosing spondylitis, and ulcerative colitis, among others. Of course, these two medicines were originally only approved to treat individual conditions, so the fact that they're both approved in the U.S. and E.U. for multiple illnesses is a testament to the company's ability to squeeze more earnings from its major programs by continuing research and development (R&D) activities even after launch.

What's more, in 2023 AbbVie's pipeline could yield it with as many as eight new regulatory approvals for expanded indications of its already marketed drugs. That's sure to drive further revenue growth, and there are so many late-stage clinical trials ongoing in the company's pipeline that a similar pace is more probable than not for 2024 and beyond. And all of that should help it keep beating the bear market.